Pospisil Goes Back-To-Back With Budapest Title
A LOOK BACK
Hungarian Challenger Open (Budapest, Hungary): It has been four years since Vasek Pospisil reached a career-high of No. 25 in the ATP Rankings, but the Canadian is fast returning to the top form that carried him to stardom. The 27-year-old has kicked off his 2018 campaign in dominant fashion, claiming consecutive ATP Challenger Tour crowns in Rennes, France and Budapest, Hungary. He did not drop a set en route to the title in Rennes two weeks ago and battled to a trio of three-set victories on Sunday in Budapest. The week culminated with a 7-6(3), 3-6, 6-3 win over Spanish teen Nicola Kuhn.
Kuhn, aged 17, was contesting his second Challenger final after earning his maiden title in Braunschweig, Germany last year. He also teamed up with fellow #NextGenATP Felix Auger-Aliassime to capture the doubles title.
Kunal Patel San Francisco Open (San Francisco, U.S.A.): As hot as Pospisil has been to start 2018, Taiwan's Jason Jung is giving him some competition. The 28-year-old notched his third Challenger title in three years with a 6-4, 2-6, 7-6(5) win over German Dominik Koepfer in San Francisco.
Now 9-3 this year, Jung was coming off a semi-final finish (l. to Nishikori) in Dallas and earned signature upsets of seeds Mackenzie McDonald and Noah Rubin en route to the San Francisco title. He saved two match points to defeat McDonald and dropped just four games to shock Rubin.
It was his first crown away from China, following wins at Chengdu 2016 and Zhangjiagang 2017. Now, up to No. 155 in the ATP Rankings, Jung is just 12 spots off his career-high position.
Smart Fibre Launceston International (Launceston, Australia): Marc Polmans couldn't have dreamt of a stronger week to secure his first ATP Challenger Tour title. The Aussie mounted a ruthless charge to lift his maiden trophy, not dropping a set all week and dominating the final 6-2, 6-2 over countryman Bradley Mousley. Polmans is the second #NextGenATP winner of the year, joining Newport Beach champ Taylor Fritz. He rises 78 spots in the ATP Rankings to No. 223.
A LOOK AHEAD
The 25th edition of the Challenger La Manche, in Cherbourg, France, highlights the week. Former World No. 6 Gilles Simon is the top seed and appearing in his first Challenger since 2010. Former champions Mathias Bourgue, Norbert Gombos and Kenny de Schepper are in the draw.
Tennis is back in Chennai, India. After a 22-year run on the ATP World Tour, the Chennai Open Challenger is here for an inaugural edition. Jordan Thompson is the top seed, with Yuki Bhambri second and Duckhee Lee third.