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Pro Media & News

Reilly Opelka wins Dallas for third career ATP title

Victoria Chiesa | February 13, 2022

Thanks to four victories at the Dallas Open, Reilly Opelka served up his third career ATP singles title—literally.

 

Over the course of the week, Opelka went 46 service games without being broken and secured his first tour-level singles trophy in two years on Sunday with a 7-6(5), 7-6(2) victory over Jenson Brooksby in the final of the ATP 250 event.

 

Opelka's last title came at Delray Beach in 2020, but he was also a champion previously in this same week in 2019 at the New York Open on Long Island.

 

The license for that tournament was sold to Dallas beginning in 2022, bringing ATP tennis back to north Texas for the first time since 1983. 

 

Neither player lost serve in the final as the duo saved all six break points they faced, combined. Brooksby had just one chance against Opelka's vaunted serve—at 1-1 in the first set—but couldn't convert, and Opelka sealed the one hour, 52-minute victory by winning his fifth and sixth tiebreak sets of the week. Brooksby saved all five break points against him in the second set, including four at 5-5. 

 

Opelka, seeded No. 2 at the event, didn't lose a set in his four victories, and set an ATP record with John Isner for the longest tiebreak played in tour history in the semifinals

“I thought I played very well under pressure, especially against a great player like Jenson. He makes you very uncomfortable and he took me out of my comfort zone a lot of the match today," Opelka said on-court in his champion's speech. "I really had to play my best tennis to get by and I barely did.”

 

Opelka's victory evened the head-to-head between the two Americans at 1-1, and after the match, Opelka was full of praise for his fast-rising compatriot. 

 

“I’m a big fan of his game, a big believer in him. He’s super young and he’s got a lot of tennis ahead of him still," Opelka said. "The scary thing is he has a lot to even improve on and I think that’s why he’s a future Top 10 player and he’s going to be winning many titles for many years to come.”

 

Brooksby's run to the final nonetheless will put him at a career-high ranking come Monday, as he'll break the Top 50 for the first time. Ranked outside the Top 300 at this time last year, the 21-year-old will be ranked No. 45.

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