GRAN CANARIA, March 6, 2021
Spanish teenager Carlos Gimeno Valero will make his first appearance in a title match on the ATP Challenger Tour, joining Jannik Sinner, Chun-Hsin Tseng, Brandon Nakahsima and Thiago Tirante as group of players born in 2001 to achieve this feat.
The 19-year-old wild card entry fought past Blaz Kavcic from Slovenia, 3-6, 6-1, 7-5 in Saturday’s semi-final of the Gran Canaria Challenger II. Gimeno Valero won 58 per cent of his first-service points and saved one match point to prevail after two hours and 14 minutes.
Tenistas nacidos en el año 2001 que han alcanzado una final del circuito Challenger 💫
🇮🇹 Jannik Sinner
🇹🇼 Chun Hsin Tseng
🇺🇸 Brandon Nakashima
🇦🇷 Thiago Tirante
🇪🇸 CARLOS GIMENO@cgimenotenis 🔥
— MEF tennis events (@meftennisevents) March 6, 2021
“It was a difficult match right from the beginning,” said Gimeno Valero, who had to finish his quarterfinal match against No. 6 seed Alessandro Giannessi of Italy earlier in the day. “It was also tough physically but I fought until the end.”
In other action, No. 8 seed Kimmer Coppejans ended the good run of Spanish qualifier Eduard Esteve Lobato, winning 7-6(1), 6-2. The 27-year-old Belgian converted five of his eight break-point chances to advance in one hour and 35 minutes.
“I am very happy to have reached the final. He played well in these conditions with a lot of wind, which is not easy,” Coppejans said. “It was important to get the first set under my belt. Maybe he was a bit tired with all the matches he played and it became easier towards the end.”
Coppejans and Gimeno Valero will meet for the first time. The Belgian is seeking his sixth ATP Challenger title, his first since lifting the trophy of the Copa Sevilla 2018.
Frenchmen take doubles title
Later in the afternoon, Enzo Couacaud and Manuel Guinard captured the doubles title. The all-French duo defeated Spaniards Javier Barranco Cosano and Eduard Esteve Lobato 6-1, 6-4. The encounter lasted 46 minutes.
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