CARY, September 14, 2018
Two US-Americans advanced to the semi-finals of the Atlantic Tire Championship on Thursday. Both Bjorn Fratangelo, the No. 5 seed, and Reilly Opelka, the No. 4 seed, will advance to the stage of the final four at Cary Tennis Park.
Fratangelo defeated Alejandro Gonzalez 6-7(5), 7-5, 6-4 to advance to the semi-finals where he will face Australian qualifier James Duckworth. It will be the first meeting for the pair. Duckworth is hoping to follow in the steps of the tournament’s 2016 winner, James McGee, who came through the qualifying rounds to become the the champion of the $50,000 ATP Challenger hard-court event.
Opelka defeated German player Dominik Koepfer 7-6(4), 6-4 in just under ninety minutes. Opelka won 90 per cent of his first serve points, with 14 aces helping that statistic. He will face Kaichi Uchida of Japan on Saturday.
College players had a strong showing in the doubles quarterfinals. Former University of Michigan player, Evan King, and his partner Hunter Reese, University of Tennessee player, will move on to the next round where they will face Toshihide Matsui and Frederick Nielsen who received a walk-over to the semifinals. Local University of North Carolina players William Blumberg and Blaine Boyden defeated the No. 3 seeds in the last match of the evening. The Tarheel duo saved all five breakpoints they faced to move on to the next round where they will face the French team of Fabrice Martin and Hugo Nys.
Due to the impending Hurricane Florence, no play will be held on Friday. Match play is scheduled to resume on Saturday pending court conditions.
Thursday, September 13 – RESULTS
(5) Bjorn Fratangelo (USA) def Alejandro Gonzalez (COL) 6-7(5), 7-5, 6-4
(Q) James Duckworth (AUS) def (Q) Joris De Loore (BEL) 6-3, 7-6(3)
Kaichi Uchida (JPN) def Jose Hernandez-Fernandez (DOM) 6-4, 6-3
(4) Reilly Opelka (USA) def Dominik Koepfer (GER) 7-6(4), 6-4
(1) Fabrice Martin / Hugo Nys (FRA) def Hans Hach Verdugo (MEX) / Andreas Siljestrom (SWE) 7-6(5), 7-5
(WC) William Blumberg /Blaine Boyden (USA) def (3) Peter Polansky (CAN) /Jackson Withrow (USA) 6-2, 7-5
Evan King / Hunter Reese (USA) def Luis Martinez (VEN) / David Perez Sanz (ESP) 7-6(5), 5-7, 11-9