2015 Glasgow Challenger Day 4 Report: Pliskova a winner, Cox and Corrie Reach Quarters
Niall Clarke, Tennis Atlantic
My few days in Glasgow have been eventful. I have witnessed a lot of talent from both the ATP Challenger and ITF women’s tour, and It’s been very exciting and interesting. To start my final day, I watched women’s number two seed, Kristyna Pliskova face Great Britain’s Freya Christie. It was a tight affair in the first set, but the Czech managed to break at 5-5 and serve out the set comfortably. It looked like Pliskova was going to ru away with the match, as she broke early in the second and had opportunities to extend her lead. However Christie kept fighting, and the 17 year old soon found herself having opportunities of her own to take the lead in the second. The number two seed’s big serve and groundstrokes eventually took their toll as just like the first set, Pliskova broke at 5-5. The Czech soon raced to a 40-0 lead and three match points, but they went as quick as they came as came. Christie hadn’t given up the match just yet and fought to try get herself back on level terms. Pliskova was having none of it as she soon wrapped up the match to win 7-5,7-5.
Speaking after the match Pliskova said: “She was playing really well, and I didn’t expect it to be so tough. I also didn’t play as great as yesterday so that’s why it was so close, but I am happy I got through” “My key shot is the serve” she added. “It is my biggest weapon, and I am happy when I hit aces, so it’s most important to my game” When asked about her 2015 goals Pliskova answered: “This year I want to be in the top 100, which isn’t that far, so maybe I can reach top 50 but we’ll see”
Whilst Pliskova was defeating Christie, another Brit took to court six, albeit with reverse fortunes. Naomi Broady faced Russia’s Marta Sirotkina in the women’s singles, with hope of booking a quarter final spot. The match started fairly close, but the Brit found herself a set up after breaking her Russian opponent at 5-4. Broady continued that momentum into the second set, breaking early to establish a 2-0 lead. Sirotkina broke straight back however, showing her opponent she hadn’t given up the fight just yet. Despite the Russian’s best attempts to get back into the match, Broady proved to be too strong. Using her aggressive play, The Brit ran away with the second set 6-1 to secure another straight sets victory.
Next up on court six, it was an all British affair as wildcards Daniel Cox and Daniel Smethurst competed for a quarter final place. The first set lacked any real quality, as breaks were plenty. Cox improved tenfold however, whilst Smethurst struggled to play himself into the match. Cox took the first set 6-4 and didn’t look in any sort of trouble afterwards. An early break was followed quickly by another, and then another as Smethurst got more and more frustrated. The second set passed by quickly as Cox bageled his opponent with relative ease. 6-4, 6-0 was the final result as Cox booked his quarter final place.
The next British hopeful to play on court six was Marcus Willis. The world number 357 was impressive in his round one victory over Matteo Viola, so I was looking forward to seeing if he could back it up against Maxime Authom. It didn’t bode well for the Brit in the early stages as he found himself a break down after the first game. After a comfortable hold by the Belgian, Willis found himself under more pressure on serve, but this time he managed to hold. Authom wouldn’t budge on his serve despite his opponent getting better and better, and as a result he took the first set 6-4. With Willis’ ground game ever improving he started to look more like the player who beat Dan Evans and Viola. The Brit soon found himself a break up in the second, with the match seemingly turning in his favour. Willis served out the set to level the score at 1-1 and have momentum in his favour. The qualifier seemingly had the match in his grasp with an early break, but Authom began getting himself into more of Willis’ service points and quickly broke back. From then on, Authom was in control, and despite Willis’ best attempts to get back in the match, Authom broke and served out the match to win 6-4,3-6,6-3 in a great contest.
I then went to catch the second set of Ruben Bemelmans vs Jonathan Eysseric, which was an interesting encounter. Both men showed their talents, but Bemelmans was just the little bit better at everything, and comfortably won 6-2,6-3.
During the conclusion of that match, number four seed Andrej Martin and Edward Corrie started their clash on court six. From what I gathered from my brief glimpses of the first set, it was a break-fest. Corrie got off to a flyer, getting an early 2-0 lead. However it was soon surrendered as Martin quickly broke back and broke again to go 3-2 up. Corrie broke back during the set, and then broke to win the set 6-4 in what seemed like a strange match. When the Bemelmans/Eysseric match had finished, I rushed over to catch the second set of this interesting encounter. At this point, Corrie had broken early in the second set and looked in control. The Brit led 5-3, but failed to serve the match out, as the game Slovak fought hard to keep himself in the match. It went to a tiebreak in which Martin drew the first mini break. His lead was short-lived as Corrie broke back and took the lead which gave him 2 match points at 6-4 In the breaker. The first was saved by Martin, who held on his own serve to put pressure on the Brit to see it out on his own serve. This time, Corrie didn’t make a mistake. The Brit upset the number four seed 6-4,7-6 to add yet another British name to the Quarter Final line up.
Elsewhere, there were wins in the men’s singles for: Alexandr Nedovyesov, Roberto Marcora, and Niels Detsein. David Guez received a walkover. In the women’s there were wins for Nina Zander, Lesley Kerkhove, Katy Dunne, Ana Bogdan, Ysaline Bonaventure, and Stephanie Foretz.
That concludes my daily reports of Glasgow. It’s been a great few days and I will definitely come back next year if I can.
You can check out the final results in Chris De Waard’s recap this weekend.