TALLAHASSEE, April 25, 2018
On the second day of main draw matches at the $75,000 Tallahassee Tennis Challenger, the youth came out on top with Jay Clarke, Miomir Kecmanovic, and Michael Mmoh all advancing to the second round.
In the first match of the day, 20-year old Michael Mmoh took on fellow American Jared Hiltzik. The No. 4 seeded Mmoh quickly took the first set 6-2 off the wild card. In the second set Hiltzik and Mmoh both traded a trio of breaks and forced the set to a tiebreak. Mmoh closed out the tricky set for a final score of 6-2, 7-6(9) just shy of two hours.
Mmoh is currently No. 144 in the world and this past January he qualified for and reached the quarterfinals of the ATP World Tour event in Brisbane. In the process he notched his first ATP match win and reached his first ATP Tour quarterfinal. Last month he also reached the third round of the ATP Masters Series event in Miami.
Later in the day, 19-year old Jay Clarke battled it out against Christian Harrison. Clarke took the opening set 6-3, but the American was able to flip the table and take the second set 6-3. In the final and decisive set, Clarke ran away with it and closed out the match 6-3, 3-6, 6-2. Clarke has experienced a stellar two months after reaching the quarterfinals of two ATP Challenger Tour events (San Luis Open & Elizabeth Moore Sarasota Open). In 2017 Clarke received a doubles wild card into Wimbledon with Marcus Willis, where they reached the third round.
Next up, No. 8 seed Miomir Kecmanovic took on wild card and Florida State No. 1 Aziz Dougaz. The 18-year old Serbian was a force to be reckoned with as he barreled past Dougaz’s second serves and took the opening set 6-2. In the second set Dougaz attempted to hang in with the young-gun, but Kecmanovic capitalized on a key break point opportunity and closed out the match 6-2, 6-4. Kecmanovic is currently ranked No. 201 in the world and picked up his first singles title on the ATP Challenger Tour in October 2017 (China International Suzhou).
The trio of young-guns are all currently ranked in the Top 20 (Mmoh – #9; Kecmanovic – #13; Clarke – #18) of the ATP Race to Milan. The top seven players 21 or under will have the opportunity to compete in the NextGen ATP Finals which will be held in Milan, Italy, in November.
Play gets underway on Wednesday at 11 a.m. with an action-packed day of second round matches as Clarke, Kecmanovic, and Mmoh will all take to the court again.
Tuesday, April 24 – RESULTS
Singles – First round
Noah Rubin, United States, d. Dominik Koepfer, Germany, 7-6(3), 6-2,
Christian Garin, Chile, d. Evan King (7), United States, 6-0, 6-3,
Hugo Dellien, Bolivia, d. Enrique Lopez Perez, Spain, 7-5, 6-2,
Jay Clarke, Great Britain, d. Christian Harrison, United States, 6-3, 3-6, 6-2,
Guilherme Clezar, Brazil, d. Andrea Arnaboldi, Italy, 6-2, 6-4,
Mitchell Krueger, United States, d. Henri Laaksonen (3), Switzerland, 6-3, 7-6(5),
Miomir Kecmanovic (8), Serbia, d. WC-Aziz Dougaz, Tunisia, 6-2, 6-4,
Michael Mmoh (4), United States, d. WC-Jared Hiltzik, United States, 6-2, 7-6(9),
Peter Polansky (2), Canada, d. LL-Joao Pedro Sorgi, Brazil, 7-6(6), 7-6(6),
SE-Juan Ignacio Londero, Argentina, d. Jan Choinski, Germany, 1-6, 6-4, 6-1,
Denis Kudla (1), United States, d. Facundo Bagnis, Argentina, 3-6, 6-1, 7-5.
Doubles – First round
Mitchell Krueger and Hunter Reese, United States, d. Nathaniel Lammons and Alex Lawson, United
States, 4-6, 6-2, 10-8,
Christian Garin, Chile, and Akira Santillan, Australia, d. WC-Guy Orly Iradukunda, Burundi, and Lucas
Poullain, 6-3, 7-5.