NUSSLOCH, January 30, 2016
Niels Desein and Nils Langer will compete in Sunday’s final of the $25,000 MLP-Cup in Nussloch. The 28-year-old Belgian defeated Maximilian Marterer 7-6, 4-6, 7-6 on Saturday afternoon. Desein, who claimed the title here in 2010, withstood 16 aces, hitting 8 of his own to prevail in two hours and eight minutes.
“There was not much difference between us today. He served well on the important points but I think that I was a bit better during the rallies. He had saved a couple of match points in the third set before we went into the tie-break but I don’t think that I did something wrong. He just played good tennis with a high level, in particular during the first set,” Desein told Tennis TourTalk afterwards.
“I played two good matches in the qualies of the Australian Open and came back on Saturday. I had a week at home to practice. Coming from outdoors and then play indoors is not such a big deal. I am used to play here. This is my third time in Nussloch. I claimed the title here the first time, the second time I didn’t play well and lost in the second round but I know the conditions here. It’s not easy to play, as carpet is really fast. You have to serve well and play aggressively. You can lose and win against everybody,” the world number 270 from Gent explained and added that his goal was to play the final here.
“I am happy to be through to the final. For me it is important to find my level of tennis again, as I dropped a bit in rankings. I was ranked 154, won an ATP Challenger event but then my level and ranking dropped, which was mentally pretty tough. In the next two weeks I have to defend a lot of points, so I will lose some positions again. This is tough but the goal is to break inside the top 100 at the end of the season,” Desein stated.
The seventh seed will take on the tournament’s top-ranked player Nils Langer in the final. The world number 211 from Germany outlasted third seed Uladzimir Ignatik in three sets, winning 4-6, 6-4, 6-3. Langer won 56% of his first service points and was efficient on his break points to reach his first final of the season. Desein and Langer will meet for the first time on the tour.
Later in the afternoon, Desein and Ignatik teamed up in the doubles final but lost to the all-German-combination of Johannes Haerteis and Kevin Krawietz, winning 6-7, 6-4, 10-8 in one hour and 26 minutes.