LUDWIGSHAFEN, July 6, 2019
The 56-man draw has been whittled down to the final two players at the Ludwigshafen Challenger, as Filip Horansky of Slovakia and local favourite Yannick Hanfmann will compete in Sunday’s singles title match.
Horansky emerged victorious from the all-Slovakian affair with Alex Molcan, winning 6-4, 6-4 on a sunny and hot Saturday at the BASF Tennis Club. The No. 12 seed sent down six aces, saved four of the five break points he faced and capitalized on three of his own 10 chances to advance in one hour and 20 minutes.
Horansky will appear in his first title match since lifting his maiden trophy at the ATP Challenger in Meerbusch last year.
“It was a pretty tough match,” Horansky said afterwards. “We know each other pretty well, as we practice together in Bratislava but my serve helped me. That was the key today.”
Filip Horansky 🇸🇰 has reached his first @ATPChallenger final since lifting the trophy in Meerbusch last year. He will play either Yannick Hanfmann or Stefano Travaglia in Ludwigshafen tomorrow. pic.twitter.com/fwquorHo3u
— TennisTourTalk (@TennisTourTalk) 6. Juli 2019
Later in the afternoon atmosphere heated up, as Hanfmann had to face a tough task against No. 2 seeded Italian Stefano Travaglia. The 27-year-old German put a lot of variety into his shots and came back from a set down and a break down in the third to secure a 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 victory in one hour and 43 minutes.
“The mental composure made the difference in the end,” Hanfmann told Tennis TourTalk. “I am playing at home and the crowd gave me a bit more energy than him. I was down a break in the third, but he played one loose game and I broke right back, having the momentum and won all of the games until the end.”
The Karlsruhe native has made it into a final for the first time since winning on home soil in Braunschweig last year. “I am having so much fun playing tennis this week, so I am really looking forward to tomorrow. I am just happy to be back in a final.”
Horansky won the only previous meeting with Hanfmann at the ATP Challenger in Caltanissetta, Italy, three years ago.
“He is a dangerous player. “He has some uncomfortable shots for me,” Hanfmann said about his upcoming opponent.
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Doubles final set
Sunday’s action will start with the doubles final. Pedro Sousa and Joao Domingues will face the tournament’s top seeds Nathaniel Lammons from the United States and Brazilian Fernando Romboli.
The all-Portuguese combination fought past Dustin Brown from Germany and Hans Hach Verdugo of Mexico, winning 6-4, 3-6, 13-11 in one hour and 29 minutes.
Photo Gallery (by Florian Heer)