STARNBERG, May 25, 2018
Spanish young guns Carlos Taberner and Jaume Munar have qualified for the main draw of the French Open for the first time. Taberner had knocked out 16th seeded German Yannick Maden and 2010 Roland Garros semi-finalist Jürgen Melzer of Austria before he fought past Oscar Otte of Germany 6-2, 2-6, 6-4 in the final round on Friday.
The 20-year-old from Valencia, who struggled with an abdominal injury in recent times and was forced to retire in his last two matches on the ATP Challenger Tour in Alicante and Tunis, outpointed his opponent 89-85 in two hours and four minutes.
“I am still young and this has been my most important win of my career so far. It means to play a main draw at a Grand Slam. It will give me a lot of confidence and the opportunity to continue in the tournament,” Taberner was pleased afterwards. The World No. 194 had to save match points in his second round encounter against Melzer.
“Roland Garros is a tournament that I have always watched at home with my parents since I was a child. It is my first time here. In fact, I had never come to Paris and now I’ve won three matches here to reach the main draw.” Taberner will next face Barcelona Open runner-up Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece.
Munar sets up first round clash with Ferrer
Munar advanced to the final stage of the qualifying with wins over 11th seeded US-American Tim Smyczek and Canadian youngster Felix Auger-Aliassiame. The 21-year-old from Mallorca eventually rallied past Korean teenager Duckhee Lee 6-7, 6-0, 7-6. Munar converted seven of his 25 break point chances and clinched the decider in the final set 7-1 to secure victory in two hours and 57 minutes.
Game set match Munar pic.twitter.com/bUCmHyKTqW
— Stefano Berlincioni (@Carretero77) 25. Mai 2018
“It was a crazy match. The other days I started very well but today I had a very bad start. Then it took me a bit to recover. I didn’t played a great match but it paid off that I fought until the end,” told Munar.
Munar will appear in his second Grand Slam main draw following his debut at this year’s Australian Open, where he fall to Frenchman Gael Monfils in the opening round 3-6, 6-7, 4-6. This time he will challenge Spanish veteran David Ferrer.