STARNBERG, February 28, 2021
Mackenzie McDonald has captured his third ATP Challenger title by lifting the trophy of the Forte Challenger 100 held at Kazakhstan’s National Tennis Center in Nur-Sultan. The 25-year-old US-American beat No. 6 seed Jurij Rodionov of Austria 6-1, 6-2 in Sunday’s singles final.
McDonald battled through the top half of the draw en-route to the championship match, knocking out top seed and local favourite Mikhail Kukushkin in the first round, followed by wins over Denis Istomin from Uzbekistan, Frederico Ferreira Silva of Portugal and No. 5 seed Henri Laaksonen from Switzerland.
The World No. 139 sent down seven aces in the final, winning 77 per cent of his first service points. McDonald saved all four break points he faced and capitalized on four of his own six break-point chances to prevail after 56 minutes.
— ATP Challenger Tour (@ATPChallenger) February 28, 2021
“When the opportunity arose to play again in Nur-Sultan, I had no single doubt even for a second. In October last year at the Astana Open 2020 I managed to reach the tournament’s quarterfinal, where I lost to my opponent back then. My second visit to the capital of Kazakhstan has proved to be lucky. I enjoyed every minute being the guest in this wonderful country,” McDonald said during the on-court ceremony.
By lifting his first trophy since the ATP Challenger in Seoul, South Korea in 2018, the Florida resident earned $14,400 in prize money as well as 100 ATP Ranking points.
Molchanov/Nedovyesov win third doubles title of the season
On Saturday evening, Denys Molchanov from the Ukraine and Aleksandr Nedovyesov from Kazakhstan took the doubles title. The top seeds defeated US-American No. 2 seeds Nathan Pasha and Max Schnur 6-4, 6-4. The final lasted one hour and eight minutes.
Molchanov and Nedovyesov clinched their third team title of the season following their back-to-back triumphs at the Antalya Challengers. The pair split $6,200 in prize money and earn 100 ATP doubles ranking points.
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