Trieste Challenger Main Draw Kicks Off

Lorenzo Musetti

TRIESTE, August 24, 2020

Players have descended on Trieste, the capital city of the autonomous region Friuli-Venezia Giulia, for the second stop of the ATP Challenger clay-court swing in Italy this summer. Under bright skies but in windy conditions at the Tennis Club Triestino, main draw action of the € 88,520 Citta di Trieste kicked off on Monday.

The future of Italian tennis was on display, as 18-year-old Lorenzo Musetti delighted his home crowd on Campo Centrale following a 6-3, 6-2 win over Germany’s Daniel Altmaier. The teenager capitalized on four of his five break point chances to secure victory in one hour and 11 minutes. Next up for Musetti will be either the tournament’s top seed Alexei Popyrin of Australia or Frenchman Quentin Halys.

With Matteo Gigante another Italian wild card entry opened his home campaign with a win. The 18-year-old from Rome beat compatriot Filippo Baldi 6-2, 6-2 in 70 minutes to face Juan Pablo Ficovich of Argentina next.

Carlos Alcaraz Garfia of Spain will join his fellow teenagers in the second round. The 17-year-old qualifier from Spain, coached and accompanied in Trieste by former World No. 1 Juan Carlos Ferrero, eased past Mathias Bourgue of France. Alcaraz Garfia won 56 per cent of the total points played to finish the encounter after 78 minutes. The talent from Murica will next play Italian veteran Matteo Viola.

Moraing eases into second round

Earlier in the day on Court 3, Mats Moraing was in cruise mode to beat Facundo Mena of Argentina 6-0, 6-1 in just under one hour of play. The 28-year-old, who fell to fellow German Philipp Kohlschreiber in the second round of last week’s I.CLTK Prague Open 2020 by Moneta in the Czech Republic, was pleased with his performance.

“It wasn’t too easy playing in these windy conditions today, but I tried to avoid making simple mistakes,” Moraing told Tennis TourTalk afterwards. The World No. 257 enjoys his stay at the inaugural Challenger event held at the head of the Gulf of Trieste. “It is a world-class venue here in my opinion. It is always great to play in Italy. It is a very nice tournament and I hope that it will remain on the calendar for the upcoming years.”

Like probably all of the tennis pros, Moraing is happy of having the chance to return to the court amid the COVID-19 pandemic. “In the Czech Republic, however, spectators do not have to wear masks and come pretty close to the players. It’s understandable due to the low number of coronavirus cases in the country, but here it’s better. Mask wearing is enforced throughout the grounds.”

Moraing will oppose Argentine qualifier Tomas Martin Etcheverry in the second round.

Italian media: Zverev sr. tested positive for coronavirus

The tournament made its first headline before the start of the main when Italian sources reported that the father of Alexander Zverev has tested positive for COVID-19 in Trieste, where he is with his older son Mischa. Mischa Zverev was scheduled to play No. 5 seed Roberto Marcora on Tuesday, but has pulled out of the tournament due to personal reasons.