POPRAD TATRY, June 22, 2017
Roberto Carballés-Baena headlined Thursday’s quarterfinal action at the €64,000 Poprad Tatry Challenger, knocking out the tournament’s top seed and World No. 46 Martin Klizan. The sixth seed from Spain won 6-2, 6-3 and the event will remain without any local player left in the draw.
Carballés-Baena won 76 per cent of his second service points and broke his opponent six times to seal victory in one hour and 17 minutes.
“I am very happy. I was confident on court today. If I play my best tennis, I will have a chance against the best,” Carballés-Baena was pleased afterwards. The World No. 144 has only dropped nine games en-route to the semis. “I have played an excellent tournament so far but tomorrow it will be definitely challenging again and I will have to give my best.”
The 24-year-old from Tenerife, who captured his first two Challenger titles in 2015 in Morocco, will next take on Laslo Djere. The third seed emerged victorious from the all-Serbian-affair with Filip Krajinovic, rallying 1-6, 6-4, 7-5. Djere was a set and a break down but fought back, breaking serve seven times to prevail in two hours and 27 minutes.
Carballés-Baena and Djere will meet for the third time. The Serbian won the last meeting in the semi-finals of the ATP Challenger in Cortina d’Ampezzo in straight sets.
Cedrik-Marcel Stebe from German defeated Elias Ymer of Sweden 6-2, 7-5. The World No. 215 saved three of his six break points he faced, converting six of his own to advance in one hour and 40 minutes.
Stebe will appear in his second consecutive semi-final after reaching the stage of the final four in Caltanissetta last week, facing Adam Pavlasek next.
The seventh seed from the Czech Republic eased past Austrian Sebastian Ofner, winning 6-0, 7-5. Pavlasek won 56 per cent of the total points played to finish the encounter after one hour and 21 minutes.
“The match was not as easy as the scoreboard might tell. The second set was very even and I am happy to be through,” told Pavlasek, who lifted the trophy here at the tourament’s inaugural edition in 2015. Stebe and Pavlasek will meet for the second time with the Czech leading 1-0 in head-to-head records.
In Saturday’s doubles final Mateusz Kowalczyk from Poland and German Andreas Mies will play Luca Margaroli of Switzerland and Austrian Tristan-Samuel Weissborn.