Pro Circuit Round-up:
Opelka, Holt lead Americans
Arthur Kapetanakis | September 17, 2018
While the U.S. Davis Cup team nearly pulled off a historic comeback in Croatia, many of their compatriots were stateside competing and succeeding in two USTA Pro Circuit events.
Reilly Opelka was a singles finalist at the $50,000 Challenger event in Cary, N.C., while Brandon Holt (pictured above, left) defeated Martin Redlicki (above, right) in the final of the $15,000 Futures event in Claremont, Calif.
Opelka defeated Ernesto Escobedo and Donald Young on his way to the final, reaching the championship round without dropping a set in four matches, including a 3-0 record in tiebreaks. The No. 4 seed was turned back in the final by James Duckworth of Australia, 7-6, 6-3.
The result moves the 6-foot-11 Opelka back up to No. 125 in the ATP rankings, matching his career high from June 2017. The Palm Beach Coast, Fla., resident was seeking his third ATP Challenger title and a second USTA Pro Circuit crown; his first career title came in 2016 at the $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit event in Charlottesville, Va. ADVERTISEMENT It is a second straight runner-up finish for Opelka, who was also a finalist at the $150,000 ATP Challenger event in Chicago last week.
The 21-year-old Opelka currently sits in 11th place in the ATP Race to Milan, and is the third-ranked American behind Frances Tiafoe (5th) and Taylor Fritz (6th). The Top 7 21-and-under singles players (plus one wild card) will feature November’s Next Gen ATP finals.
Bjorn Fratangelo, an unseeded semifinalist in last week's Chicago event, also matched that result in North Carolina by again reaching the last four, this time as the No. 5 seed. After briefly breaking into the ATP's Top 100 in 2016, Fratangelo is now ranked No. 169, but trending upwards.
Evan King and Hunter Reese lifted the doubles trophy, winning a pair of third-set match tiebreakers to reach the final before knocking off the top-seeded French duo of Fabrice Martin and Hugo Nys, 6-4, 7-6.
In the California event, Holt won his first Pro Circuit title with a pair of come-from-behind, three-set victories, including a 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 final result over Redlicki. The son of International Tennis Hall of Famer Tracy Austin, Holt is a two-time singles All-American at the University of Southern California, where he ended the 2017-18 season as the No. 12-ranked collegiate singles player in the country. He remains on the Trojans’ roster for his junior season.
In the doubles competition, champions Robert Kelly and Korey Lovett defeated Paul C. Oosterbaan and Samuel Shropshire, 7-6, 6-4, in an all-American final. Redlicki reached the doubles semifinals with his partner, George Goldhoff, before falling to the eventual champions in a third-set match tiebreak.
Other notable results from Americans on the ITF Circuit include:
- Nick Chappell won the singles title at the $25,000 ITF Futures event in Toronto, while Harrison Adams was a singles semifinalist. Felix Corwin reached the singles quarterfinals and the doubles final.
- Dasha Ivanova won the singles title at the $15,000 ITF Pro Circuit event in Montemor-O-Novo, Portugal.
(Photo courtesy of Steve Pratt)