GRANBY, August 8, 2016
The singles finals at the 21st edition of the Granby National Bank Challenger were played on Sunday. US-Americans Jennifer Brady and Frances Tiafoe were crowned champions, following in the footsteps of 2015 winners Johanna Konta of Great Britain and Vincent Millot of France.
Brady faced Olga Govortsova of Belarus, who was dominant all week. Brady jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the opening set before rain forced the players back to the locker room for a few minutes. When they returned, the American continued her strong play to 5-2 only to see Govortsova level the set at 5-5. Brady held strong to take a 7-5 lead and came away with a 7-5, 6-2 victory despite two more rain delays. The 21-year-old captures her second title of the season.
“It wasn’t easy to stay focused today because of the rain, but I am happy that I remained mentally strong,” said Brady. “It was a great week. It’s not at every Challenger that we get to play in front of this many people. This title gives me lots of confidence heading into the U.S. Open.”
In the men’s final, fast rising US-American Frances Tiafoe made quick work of Marcelo Arevalo of El Salvador 6-1, 6-1. Playing in his fifth career Challenger final and second in a row, Tiafoe collects his maiden Challenger crown. The American was the no. 2 ranked junior in the world in 2014 and is already ranked inside the Top 150 at the pro level.
“I wasn’t expecting such a quick match, but I am happy with what I was able to produce today,” said Tiafoe. “I had played in a few Challenger finals and I am relieved that I finally get to taste my first victory. This is an important step for me. My next goal is to crack the Top 100.”
Most of the players who were in Granby will contest the Gatineau National Bank Challenger this week. There are several noteworthy first round matches on tap, including Tiafoe against Denis Shapovalov and an all-Canadian encounter between Peter Polansky and Félix Auger-Aliassime.