HEILBRONN, May 19, 2018
Rudolf Molleker joins Felix Auger-Aliassime and Nicola Kuhn as players born in the year 2000 to reach a title match on the ATP Challenger Tour. The 17-year-old German rallied past Juan-Ignacio Londero of Argentina 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 in Saturday’s semi-final of the €85,000 NECKARCUP in Heilbronn.
After a slow start, Molleker found his rhythm, fired 11 aces and broke his opponent three times to prevail after one hour and 54 minutes.
“I was pretty nervous in the beginning,” the teenager stated. “However, I am playing some really good tennis this week here. The results show me that my hard work is paying off. I have now achieved three great wins and you can’t say I was lucky.”
By reaching the final here, Molleker will earn at least 60 ATP-Ranking points, cracking the top 400 for the first time.
The youngster will next face World No. 81 Jiri Vesely. The second seed from the Czech Republic eased past Kamil Majchrzak of Poland. 7-5, 6-2.
Vesely won 57 per cent of the total points played to secure victory in one hour and 18 minutes. “I played a solid match and forced him to make errors,” Vesely was pleased with his performance, reaching his first ATP Challenger final since lifting the trophy on home soil in Prostejov last year.
Of course, the 24-year-old will be the favourite in the final. “I practiced with Rudi during the week here and he is a very talented player and I think it will be an exciting match.”
RESULTS – MAY 19, 2018
Singles – Semifinals
 J. Vesely (CZE) d K. Majchrzak (POL) 75 62
[WC] R. Molleker (GER) d J. Londero (ARG) 46 63 62
Doubles – Semifinals
R. Junaid (AUS) / D. Pel (NED) d  D. Molchanov (UKR) / I. Zelenay (SVK) 61 64
K. Krawietz (GER) / A. Mies (GER) d S. Gille (BEL) / J. Vliegen (BEL) 61 76(6)