MAIA/STARNBERG, December 13, 2021
The final week of the 2021 season on the ATP Challenger Tour is underway with a second consecutive week in Maia, Northern Portugal. Main draw action at the Maia Open 2, being held at the Complexo Municipal de Ténis da Maia, kicked off on Monday.
World No. 206 Kimmer Coppejans opened his title bid with a hard-fought 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 first-round victory over 19-year-old Portuguese wild card entry Pedro Araujo. The No. 2 seed of the €44,820 indoor clay-court tournament sent down three aces and won 73 per cent of his first-service points to advance after two hours and 21 minutes.
Coppejans will next face the winner of the encounter between German qualifier Elmar Ejupovic and Spanish alternate Oriol Roca Batalla.
Earlier in the day, Elliot Benchetrit of Morocco defeated Frenchman Alexis Gautier 6-2, 6-2. The 23-year-old saved the only break point he faced and capitalized on four of his own seven break-point chances to advance after one hour and 14 minutes. Up next for Benchetrit will be either No. 6 seed Joao Domingues from Portugal or Nick Hardt of the Dominican Republic.
Nikolas Sanchez Izquierdo emerged victorious from the all-Spanish battle with Javier Barranco Cosano, winning 6-4, 4-6, 6-4. The World No. 316 from Barcelona outpointed his compatriot 97-93 after two hours and 25 minutes. Sanchez Izquierdo will next play the winner of the match between fourth-seeded home favourite Gastao Elias and Ukrainian alternate Oleksii Krutykh.
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