HEILBRONN, May 15, 2016
Nikoloz Basilashvili claimed the title of the €64,000 Neckarcup in Heilbronn, winning Sunday’s final against Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4, 7-6.
The 24-year-old from Georgia withstood seven aces, hitting four of his own. Basilashvili won 71% of his first service points and capitalized on three of his nine break point chances to celebrate victory in one hour and 24 minute.
“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,” the world number 125 said, knocking out three seeds in Heilbronn.
He takes away €9,200 in prize money as well as 100 ATP ranking points.
Struff, who lifted the trophy here in 2013, was obviously dissapointed.
“I did not play as well as in the two previous rounds. He was very aggressive and I could not get to my best level,” the German stated.
Earlier the day, Sander Arends and Tristan-Samuel Weissborn claimed the doubles title, winning 6-3, 6-4 over Croats Nikola Mektic and Antonio Sancic in 55 minutes. The Dutch-Austrian-combination were teaming up for the only third time to appear in as many finals. The pair triumphed at the ATP Challenger in Ostrava and finished runner-up in Rome last week.
“I think we played with a lot of confidence. The two previous weeks were amazing and this today is a great bonus,” Arends was pleased afterwards, as they also made the cut for the qualification at Wimbledon.
“We trust in each other games. Even if anyone of us is not playing well, it will not really matter. We just try to play aggressive all the time and it works. But there are a lot of ups and downs in sports. Before our successful three weeks, I had only won one match in the entire season. Reaching another final here is unbelievable,” the 24-year-old Dutchman added.
“It was an honour to play here. This has been the best tournament I have ever played,” Weissborn said.
“We take some rest now, having one week off before we will compete in some team competitions in Austria and the Netherlands,” Arends explained their schedule for the next couple of weeks.
There will be no doubt that the team is going to stick together for the rest of the season. “When you play like this, you have to continue,” he said with a smile.