GENOVA, September 3, 2019 (by Brian Allen)
Italy’s Giulio Zeppieri caused the first upset at the AON Open Challenger on Tuesday, beating No. 12 seed countryman Lorenzo Giustino 6-3, 6-2 in a second-round matchup.
Zeppieri, a wildcard entry, kept Giustino behind the baseline with flat groundstrokes for most of the center court contest. “I served very good. I was in control of the match today,” said Zeppieri.
Giustino did not help his own cause by double-faulting nine times during the 68-minute match, including on both break points in the second set.
The pressure was all on Giustino, suggested Zeppieri. “I’m only 17 years old, and I’m just here to improve my game.”
He next plays No. 6 seed Stefano Travaglia of Italy.
Super Zeppieri batte Giustino 6-3/6-2 e avanza al prossimo turno pic.twitter.com/4ZPWIUYoeL
— Aon Memorial Messina (@challengergenoa) September 3, 2019
A completely different type of match unfolded between No. 7 seed Jaume Munar of Spain and Carlos Berlocq of Argentina, with Munar triumphing 3-6, 7-6(1), 6-4 in three hours, 15 minutes. Berlocq served for the win at 6-5 in the second set, but Munar broke serve, ran away with the tiebreak, and scored the lone break in the third set.
When Berlocq served for the match, Munar said he was thinking, “Keep going, keep trying to stay alive, keep mentally focused, and try to run as much as I can.
“I’m coming here not with the confidence I want, but this summer I’ve been practicing a lot, working hard,” he said. “I managed to win the second set, and at the end of the third set, I think I played really good tennis.”
Each player won the same number of service, return, and break points during their second-round match.
“The important thing is to win the important points,” said Munar, “and maybe this is what I did today.”
He plays No. 11 seed countryman Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the third round.
Hanfmann rallies past Vavassori
In one of the last first-round matches to be played, Germany’s Yannick Hanfmann scored a come-from-behind win against qualifier Andrea Vavassori of Italy 4-6, 7-5, 6-1. Hanfmann broke serve to win the second set and broke again at the beginning of the third before cruising.
A winner of two clay-court challenger events in Ludwigshafen and Augsburg earlier this summer after returning in March from a long injury layoff, Hanfmann was not pleased with his perspective despite the win today.
“It wasn’t a great performance from me,” he said. “Sometimes you have to make the best out of not-a-great situation, and I think I did that today. I’m proud of myself for getting the win, but a little bit disappointed in my attitude and play.”
Hanfmann felt that he played flat in the first set and told himself at the start of the second to have fun, listening to music carrying over from center court for inspiration.
“I know that I’m good on clay. That’s a basic confidence going in,” he stated. “But the match today showed me that I have to get better because tomorrow is going to be a tough match.”
Hanfmann plays top-seeded Lorenzo Sonego on center court Wednesday night.
(14) Taro Daniel (JPN) def. Mohamed Safwat (EGY) 6-3, 5-7, 6-4
(11) Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (ESP) def. Viktor Galovic (CRO) 6-0, 6-4
(10) Guido Andreozzi (ARG) def. Sebastian Ofner (AUT) 4-6, 6-3, 6-0
(8) Thiago Monteiro (BRA) def. (WC) Andrea Pellegrino (ITA) 6-3, 6-4
(WC) Giulio Zeppieri (ITA) def. (12) Lorenzo Giustino (ITA) 6-3, 6-2
Bernabe Zapata Miralles (ESP) def. (15) Kimmer Coppejans (BEL) 6-2, 6-4
(7) Jaume Munar (ESP) def. Carlos Berlocq (ARG) 3-6, 7-6(1), 6-4
Gianluca Mager (ITA) def. (9) Salvatore Caruso (ITA) 7-6(4), 6-2
(6) Stefano Travaglia (ITA) def. Facundo Bagnis (ARG) 3-6, 6-3, 6-3
Yannick Hanfmann (GER) def. (Q) Andrea Vavassori (ITA) 4-6, 7-5, 6-1
(Q) Alex Molcan (SVK) def. (Alt) Thomaz Bellucci (BRA) 6-4, 7-5-