The 2016 ATP Challenger Tour calendar contained 166 tournaments, with prize money ranging from $40,000 up to $125,000. It was the 40th edition of Challenger tournaments cycle, and eighth under the name of “ATP Challenger Tour”. Tennis TourTalk is having a review of the season in eleven parts to close the year.
During the first week of May, Thiago Monteiro claimed his first title on the ATP Challenger Tour, winning the final of the €85,000 Open du Pays d’Aix Trophee Caisse d’Erpagne against Carlos Berlocq 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.
In Asia, Konstantin Kravchuk defeated Daniel Evans 6-4, 6-4 to lifted the trophy of the 15th edition of the $100,000 Busan Open. Marko Tepavac concluded an impressive run on the hard courts in Uzbekistan by claiming his maiden title on the ATP Challenger Tour. The 22-year-old from Serbia won the final of the $50,000 Karshi Challenger against top-seed Dudi Sela of Israel 2-6, 6-3, 7-6.
Kyle Edmund won the eighth edition of the €42,500 Garden Open in Rome. The British youngster eased past Filip Krajinovic of Serbia 7-6, 6-0.
In the week of May 9, seventh seed Rogerio Dutra Silva clinched the ATP Challenger title of the €85,000 BNP Parisbas Primrose, winning the final against Bjorn Fratangelo 6-3, 6-1.
Nikoloz Basilashvili claimed the title of the €64,000 Neckarcup in Heilbronn, winning the final against Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4, 7-6.
“I am very happy abou the way I was playing. I had to give 100% but I am very pleased with the result,” Basilashvili told. “It was very close and I was also a bit nervous but I just fought until the end. It was a positive week.”
Meanwhile in Asia, Sergiy Stakhovsky fought past Lu Yen-Hsun in the title match of the $100,000 Lecoq Seoul Open and NextGen star Karen Khachanov beat Spanish veteran Ruben Ramirez-Hidalgo 6-1, 6-7, 6-1 to take the $50,000 Samarkand Challenger crown.
The following week, James Duckworth won the $50,000 KPN Renewables Bangkok Open with a 7-5, 6-4 victory over Sam Barry of Ireland.
Gastao Elias became the champion of the €42,500 XIV Venice Challenger Save Cup in Mestre. The Portuguese claimed his sixth ATP Challenger crown with a 7-6, 6-2 win against Argentine Horacio Zeballos in the final.
“I want to thank my coach an my girl friend Isabella. I played really well this week but also credit to my opponent. Horacio is one of the great players on the tour,” Elias said taking away €6,150 in prize money as well as 80 ATP ranking points.
The €42,500 Citta’ di Vicenza was the lone ATP Challenger event taking place at the same time with the first week of Roland Garros. Guido Andreozzi benefited from the retirement of Spaniard Pere Riba in the final, leading 6-0 after only 22 minutes. The Argentine captured his fourth Challenger career title.
In the week of May 30, Mikhail Kukushkin became the champion of the 23rd edition of the €106,500 Uni Credit Czech Open in Prostejov. The sixth seed eased past Hungarian qualifier Marton Fucsovics 6-1, 6-2 in the final.
“When I arrived here in Prostejov, I didn’t expect to win. My confidence grew with every match I was able to win. I felt really good today and I knew that I will have my chance to succeed. My goal for the rest of the season is just to stay healthy, as I have suffered several injuries throughout my career. I made it into the top 50 and maybe I will have the chance to achieve even higher ranking positions in the future,” he told. The Kazakh finished the season ranked World No. 89.
Radu Albot defeated fourth seed Jan-Lennard Struff 6-3, 6-4 to claim the singles title at the Franken Challenger in Fürth. “It is my first Challenger title on clay. It’s a great achievement, as it is a tough tournament here with a lot of strong players. I am really happy about that.”
Dustin Brown was the first grass court champion of the season. The German captured the €42,500 Aegon Manchester Trophy with a 7-6, 6-1 win over Yen-Hsun Lu from Taipei.