L’AQUILA, August 20, 2019
Spanish teenager Carlos Alcaraz Garfia headlined Tuesday’s first-round action at the Internazionali Di Tennis Citta’ Dell’Aquila. The 16-year-old, who entered his third ATP Challenger event with a wild card, edged past Cordenons champion Christopher O’Connell from Australia 6-4, 6-2.
With his coach and mentor Juan Carlos Ferrero sitting in the stands, Alcaraz Garfia broke his opponent’s serve four times to seal victory in one hour and 15 minutes.
Spanish teen (16 Y) Carlos Alcaraz Garfia books his spot in the second round of the @meftennisevents in l’Aquila with a 6-4 6-2 win over Cordenons @ATPChallenger champion Christopher O’Connell. pic.twitter.com/qBu2v6qwU7
— TennisTourTalk (@TennisTourTalk) August 20, 2019
“It was pretty tough today, playing against an opponent, who came here with a lot of confidence,” Alcaraz Garfia told Tennis Tour Talk. “But I played my game today and came here to enjoy competing at Challenger level.”
The El Palmar native won his first match on the ATP Challenger Tour in April at the JC Ferrero Equelite Tennis Academy in Alicante, when Alcaraz Garfia defeated Italian teen sensation Jannik Sinner in the opening round. The following week, he advanced to the third round on home soil at the Murcia Open.
In late July, Alcaraz Garfia captured his maiden title at senior’s level, lifting the trophy of the Orysol ITF Trofeo Ciudad the Denia. Here in l’Aquila, the young gun will next take on No. 8 seed Frederico Ferreira Silva of Portugal.
Popko, Torebko into third round
Dmitry Popko, No. 3 seed of the €46,600 clay-court event in the Abruzzo region, opened his title bid with a 6-3, 6-4 second-round win over Khuoyun Sultanov from Uzbekistan. The 22-year-old Kazakh captured seven titles on the ITF World Tennis Tour this season and continues his good run of form at Challenger level. Popko won 56 per cent of the total points played to advance in one hour and 19 minutes. Next up for the World No. 262 will be Jurgen Zopp of Estonia, who beat 13th seed Sasikumar Mukund from India 6-3, 6-4.
Peter Torebko of Germany also booked his spot in the third round. The 31-year-old rallied from a set down to overcome No. 16 seed Marcelo Tomas Barrios Vera from Chile. Torebko fired 11 aces, winning 85 per cent of his first-service points to prevail after two hours and 15 minutes by the score of 3-6, 6-3, 6-2. The Wesel resident will next play either the tournament’s top seed Andrej Martin of Slovakia or Italy’s Gianluigi Quinzi.