Vesely Overcomes Bellier At Bengaluru Open

Jiri Vesely (photo: Bengaluru Open)


The Bengaluru Tennis Open is back on the ATP Challenger Tour calendar in 2022 and has moved to its new spot in early February. The $53,120 hard-court tournament is being held at the KSLTA Tennis Stadium this week and follows India’s Tata Open Maharashtra ATP Tour event in Pune.

Top seed Jiri Vesely from the Czech Republic opened his title bid on Tuesday with a hard-fought 6-3, 6-7(2), 6-2 first-round victory over Swiss qualifier Antoine Bellier. The World No. 123 dominated his own service games, struck 10 aces, saved the only break point he faced and capitalized on four of his own nine break-point chances to prevail after two hours and 17 minutes.

Vesely, who reached the quarterfinals in Pune last week, will next take on home favourite Prajnesh Gunneswaran. The 32-year-old from Chennai took the first step towards regaining his 2018 title when he overcame the challenge of Frenchman Mathias Bourgue 7-6(4), 6-2.

Gunneswaran broke his opponent’s serve four times and won 56 per cent of the total points played to advance after one hour and 42 minutes.

World No. 185 Ramkumar Ramanathan, India’s highest-ranked player in the singles draw, lost to Australian Open doubles finalist Max Purcell of Australia 6-3, 0-6, 5-7 in one hour and 33 minutes and leaves Gunneswaran the lone Indian in fray for the singles crown. Purcell will next play No. 6 seed Enzo Couacaud of France.

In the bottom half of the draw, Frenchman Alexandre Muller knocked out second-seeded Italian Stefano Travaglia 6-1, 7-6(2). The 25-year-old Poissy native converted four of his 13 break point opportunities to succeed after one hour and 47 minutes.

Up next for Muller will be Dimitar Kuzmanov of Bulgaria, who eased past local wild card entry S D Prajwal Dev 6-2, 6-2. The encounter lasted 76 minutes.

Bengaluru Open – Tuesday Results

Singles – First Round

Gabriel Decamps (BRA) bt Federico Gaio (ITA) 6-3, 6-3; 5-Altug Celikbilek (TUR) bt Alt-Arjun Kadhe (IND) 6-1, 6-2; Q-Borna Gojo (CRO) bt Q- Rio Noguchi (JPN) 3-6, 6-1, 6-2; Alexandre Muller (FRA) bt 2-Stefano Travaglia (ITA) 6-1, 7-6 (2); 1-Jiri Vesely (CZE) bt Q-Antoine Bellier (SUI) 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-2; Cem Ilkel (TUR) bt LL-Steven Diez (CAN) 6-2, 6-3; Prajnesh Gunneswaran (IND) Mathias Bourgue (FRA) bt 7-6 (4), 6-2; Dimitar Kuzmanov (BUL) bt WC-SD Prajwal Dev (IND) 6-2, 6-2; Evgeny Donskoy (RUS) bt Q-Malek Jaziri (TUN)  7-6 (10), 6-4; 6-Enzo Couacaud (FRA) bt WC-Rishi Reddy (IND) 6-1, 6-3; Max Purcell (AUS) bt Ramkumar Ramanathan (IND) 3-6, 6-0, 7-5.

Doubles – First Round

WC-Yuki Bhambri (IND)/Divij Sharan (IND) bt Altug Celikbilek (TUR)/ Cem Ilkel (TUR) 3-1 (Retd); Jay Clarke (GBR)/Marc Polmans (AUS) bt Arjun Kadhe (IND) / Chun-hsin Tseng (TPE) 2-6, 6-4, 10-7; 2-Alexander Erler (AUT)/Vit Kopriva (CZE) bt WC-Adil Kalyanpur (IND)/Mukund Sasikumar (IND) 6-4, 7-5.