TULLN/STARNBERG, September 6, 2021
The ATP Challenger Tour is back in Austria with main draw matches at the inaugural NÖ Open powered by EVN kicking off at the at the venue of the TC Tulln. Damir Dzumhur from Bosnia and Herzegovina, the only seeded player of the €101,798 clay-court tournament in Monday’s first-round action, fell to Marc-Andrea Huesler in three sets.
The 25-year-old from Switzerland broke the No. 6 seeds serve six times to secure a 6-7(5), 6-2, 6-3 win in two hours and three minutes. Huesler, a two-time Challenger champion last season, will next take on Filip Horansky from Slovakia, who also rallied from a set down to overcome German alternate Johannes Haerteis 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 after two hours and 15 minutes.
Czech young gun Jiri Lehecka, who lifted his maiden Challenger trophy at the Tampere Open in Finland in late July, defeated Frenchman Maxime Janvier 6-4, 6-3. The 19-year-old saved the only break point he faced and capitalized on two of his own seven break-point chances to advance after one hour and 28 minutes. Up next for Lehecka will be either No. 4 seed Kamil Majchrzak from Poland or Danish teen sensation Holger Rune.
In other action, Geoffrey Blancaneaux eased past Cedrik-Marcel Stebe of Germany 6-3, 6-0 to set a second-round meeting with the winner of the encounter between Austrian wild card entry Lukas Neumayer and second seed Jiri Vesely from the Czech Republic.
Lukas Rosol had to go the distance against local favourite Alexander Erler, winning 6-4, 5-7, 6-1. The 36-year-old Czech will next take on either Germany’s Matthias Bachinger or No. 3 seeded Brazilian Thiago Monteiro.
In the final match of the day, big-serving Mats Moraing struck four aces to beat Tulln native Lucas Miedler 6-2, 6-1. Moraing won 66 per cent of the total points played to prevail after 55 minutes. The World No. 242 from Germany will next play the winner of the match between No. 5 seed Jozef Kovalik of Slovakia and Moraing’s compatriot Yannick Hanfmann.
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New Challenger event in Upper Austria
Off the court, tournament organizer Ronnie Leitgeb, the Austrian Tennis Federation ÖTV and the Tennis Club Mauthausen announced the launch of the Danube Upper Austria Open. The ATP Challenger 100 tournament with a total prize money of €101.798 will be held at the Danubis Tennis Centre in Mauthausen in the second or third week of May 2022.
It will mark the first Challenger event in Upper Austria since the 2001 Skandia Open in Linz.