Verdasco Punches Ticket To Odlum Brown Van Open Quarterfinals

Fernando Verdasco (photo: Bo Mon Kwan)


Spain’s Fernando Verdasco is into the quarterfinals at the 2022 Odlum Brown VanOpen after he outlasted Canadian wild card Alexis Galarneau on Centre Court at the ATP Challenger Tour 125 event on Thursday.

Verdasco, who is bidding for his second Challenger title of the season following his triumph in Monterrey, Mexico in March, stormed back after dropping the first set 6-2 to win the second and third by 6-4 and 6-2, respectively.

“It was not easy at the beginning of the match, he was very motivated. I think I was lucky enough to serve pretty well, especially in the second and third set, closing both with an ace just touching a bit of the line – that’s actually the perfect serve,” explained the 38-year-old Verdasco after the match, which lasted two hours and 17 minutes.

“I knew I had to work really hard to pass through Alexis today, so I tried my best no matter what the score was in the match and I was pretty lucky to win,” added the former World No. 7, clearly impressed by Galarneau, who’s 15 years his junior.

“(He) was pretty impressive, even if he didn’t win and I think (Canada) has a good player in the future (in Galarneau).”

Verdasco faces Constant Lestienne of France in Friday’s quarterfinals. The No. 5 seed rallied past Dominik Koepfer from Germany 5-7, 7-5, 6-3 in two hours and 41 minutes. The pair will be joined in the stage of the last eight by fourth seed and wild card entry Mikael Ymer of Sweden and France’s Ugo Humbert. Ymer and Humbert will face each other on Friday for a spot in Saturday’s semi-finals. Friday’s evening feature match-up is a quarterfinal showdown between Canada’s Vasek Pospisil and former World No. 6 Gilles Simon of France.

The other men’s singles quarterfinal has 2019 Odlum Brown VanOpen champion and No. 6 seed Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania against third seed Arthur Rinderknech of France.