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LATEST: CHALLENGER TOUR


Photograph: Juan Manuel Cerandolo.

Busan, South Korea


[6] Kamil Majchrzak (POL) def [2] Radu Albot (MDA) 6-4, 3-6, 6-2


Poland’s Kamil Majchrzak has won his fourth ATP Challenger singles title and first in over two years in Busan, South Korea.


The 26-year-old overcame the top two seeds on his way to the title, downing Soon-woo Kwon in the quarterfinals and Radu Albot in Sunday’s decider.


Packing a more powerful game than Albot, Majchrzak was able to hit through the second seed – epitomized by a brilliant passing winner to bring up the opening set.


The Pole will now rise back inside the ATP top 100 to world number 82.


En route to the title, the 26-year-old overcame Chris O’Connell, who reached his third Challenger semi-final of the season.


O’Connell progressed the furthest of eight Aussies in the singles draw – and will consequently jump back inside the ATP top 100, sitting exactly on the cusp.


In Busan doubles action, Aussie pair Marc Polmans and Max Purcell won the title after a thrilling battle in the final.


The duo overcame local team Nam Ji-sung and Song Min-kyu 6-7(5), 6-2, [12-10] in the decider after claiming an enthralling match point in the tiebreak.


It is a seventh ATP Challenger doubles title for Polmans who will now rise inside the top 300 of the men’s doubles rankings.


Meanwhile, for Wimbledon champion Purcell, it is a twelfth title at the level and boosts his doubles ranking to number 35.


Vilnius, Lithuania


Mattia Bellucci (ITA) def [Q] Cem Ilkel (TUR) 1-6, 6-3, 7-5


19-year-old Mattia Bellucci has become the youngest Italian man in over 30 years to lift ATP Challenger singles titles in consecutive weeks.


After claiming his maiden title at the level last week in France, Bellucci headed to Lithuania and triumphed once again – making it twelve Challenger victories on the bounce.


The Italian continued to fight throughout the match – initially dropping a comfortable first set before falling a break down in the decider but managed to come out on top.


The victory will propel Bellucci to world number 156, after starting last week at 275 in the ATP rankings.


Hamburg, Germany


[4] Alexander Ritschard (SUI) def [5] Henri Laaksonen (SUI) 7-5, 6-5 (ret.)


Alexander Ritschard has won his maiden ATP Challenger title, on the hard courts of Hamburg.


The Swisse – who had previously lost his two finals at the level, including one where he held four match points – finally triumphed this week, but not without drama.


Serving at 6-5 in the second set and holding another match point, Laaksonen didn’t look to make Ritschard close it out, instead retiring from the encounter.


Whilst not winning the final point, the 28-year-old earned his biggest career title and will now rise 50 places to number 166 in the ATP rankings.


Ambato, Ecuador


[2] Facundo Bagnis (ARG) def Joao Lucas Reis Da Silva (BRA) 7-6(7), 6-4


Facundo Bagnis has won his sixteenth Challenger singles title in Ecuador, ending the dream run of Brazil’s Joao Lucas Reis Da Silva.


In doing so, Bagnis’ triumph marks twenty-one titles for Argentine men at Challenger level in 2022 – the most by any one nation in a single season.


The 32-year-old overcame the world number 428 from Brazil, who enjoyed a career-best week with victories over the first and third seeds on his way to the final.


Bagnis will now rise to world number 99, whilst Reis Da Silva jumps over 100 places to number 347.


Coquimbo, Chile


[7] Juan Manuel Cerundolo (ARG) def Facundo Diaz Costa (ARG) 6-3, 3-6, 6-4


Juan Manuel Cerundolo has won his second title in three events, after claiming a tight final in Coquimbo, Chile.


The 20-year-old, who claimed his maiden ATP title last year, overcame countrymen Facundo Diaz Costa in a two-hour-and-twenty-one-minute final – played in front of a strong Challenger crowd.


Cerundolo now holds five career titles at the level – the most of his year group (2001 born), ahead of Jack Draper who has amassed four.


On the back of his successful week, the Argentine will jump up to number 136 in the ATP rankings.


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