Marchenko Wins In Izmir; Stebe Soars In Sibiu
A LOOK BACK
TEB Izmir Cup (Izmir, Turkey): Illya Marchenko gave himself the perfect birthday gift, celebrating his first tournament as a 30 year old with the title in Izmir, Turkey. The Ukrainian defeated Stephane Robert 7-6(2), 6-0 in just 73 minutes on Sunday, lifting a trophy on the ATP Challenger Tour for the sixth time. Former World No. 49 Marchenko is looking to return to the Top 100 after falling on tough times in 2017. He is up 65 spots to No. 222 in the Emirates ATP Rankings with the title.
Title title title!!! 🏆💪🏻🤘🏻 #izmircup2017— Illya Marchenko (@imarchello) September 24, 2017
Sibiu Open (Sibiu, Romania): Cedrik-Marcel Stebe continued his stunning ascent in his comeback to the pro circuit, taking his third ATP Challenger Tour title of the year on Sunday. Champion in Poprad, Slovakia and Vancouver, Canada, Stebe added a trophy in Sibiu, defeating Carlos Taberner 6-3, 6-3. Following three years on the sidelines with a slew of injuries, the German returned to the Top 100 after reaching the US Open second round as a qualifier, and is now just eight spots off his career-high of No. 71.
Gwangju Challenger (Gwangju, Korea): Speaking of comebacks from injury, Matthias Bachinger completed an impressive run to the title in Gwangju. The German defeated qualifier Tsung-Hua Yang 6-3, 6-4 on Sunday, streaking to his first Challenger crown in six years without dropping a set all week. Bachinger, who reached a career-high of No. 85 in 2011, was recently sidelined after undergoing knee surgery. At No. 495 in the Emirates ATP Rankings to open the 2017 season, he is up to No. 205 with the victory.
Columbus Challenger (Columbus, Ohio, U.S.A.): Croatia's Ante Pavic became the second-oldest first-time winner on the ATP Challenger Tour this year, claiming his maiden title in Columbus. At 28 years, six months, he defeated Alexander Ward 6-7(11), 6-4, 6-3 in two hours and 13 minutes. Pavic is up a staggering 135 spots in the Emirates ATP Rankings with the title, rising to No. 290.
A LOOK AHEAD
Three tournaments are on tap this week, headlined by the prestigious Open d'Orleans. The indoor hard-court event features defending champion Pierre-Hugues Herbert as its second seed and two-time champ Nicolas Mahut (2008, '10) seeded eighth.
In Tiburon, California, defending champion Darian King is seeded sixth, while #NextGenATP stars Quentin Halys, Michael Mmoh and Felix Auger-Aliassime are also seeded. In Rome, Laslo Djere leads the field, with Tommy Robredo, Casper Ruud and Guillermo Garcia-Lopez also in action.