GRAN CANARIA, February 27, 2021
Enzo Couacaud and Steven Diez will compete in Sunday’s singles final of the inaugural Gran Canaria Challenger. Couacaud defeated No. 4 seed Nikola Milojevic of Serbia 6-2, 6-2 in the stage of the final four on Saturday.
The World No. 216 from France, who had to save two match points in a topsy-turvy encounter in his previous round against Argentine Marco Trungelliti, capitalized on five of his nine break-point chances to advance in one hour and 29 minutes.
First finalist in Gran Canaria:
🇫🇷 Enzo Couacaud 💪
After saving two match points on Friday, @lacouac surges into the final with a 62 62 win over Milojevic.
— ATP Challenger Tour (@ATPChallenger) February 27, 2021
Later on Centre Court at the Tennis Academy El Cortijo in Telde, Diez ended the run of qualifier Alex Molcan from Slovakia. The 29-year-old Canadian won 53 per cent of the total points played to secure a 6-2, 3-6, 7-5 victory in two hours and 35 minutes.
“There are no easy matches in this stage of the tournament,” said Diez. “I had a good start in the first set but became some problems in the second set. I earned an early lead in the third and it was a match at good level.”
Both players are seeking their second ATP Challenger title and their first on clay. Diez leads the head-to-head record over Couacaud 2-1. The Toronto native with Spanish parents also won their last meeting in the qualifying at 2020 Roland Garros.
“I expect a very tough final,” said Couacaud about his upcoming task. “It is the only Challenger on clay this week, so all the clay-court specialists are here. It was a tough week in both parts of the draw.”
Glasspool/Heliovaar crowned doubles champions
In other action, Llyod Glasspool from Great Britain and Harri Heliovaara of Finland captured the doubles title. The No. 2 seeds defeated Kimmer Coppejans from Belgium and Spaniard Sergio Martos Gornes 7-5, 6-1. The final lasted one hour and nine minutes.
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