Bonzi Meets Cressy In Open Blot Rennes Final

Benjamin Bonzi (photo: Nicolas Averty)

RENNES/STARNBERG, September 16, 2023

Benjamin Bonzi and Maxime Cressy will compete in Sunday’s singles final of the Open Blot Rennes. Bonzi, the No. 8 seed of the €118,000 ATP Challenger Tour hard-court tournament, ended the run of French qualifier Matteo Martineau in the stage of the last four on Saturday.

Home favourite Bonzi saved all three break points he faced and capitalized on two of his own seven break-point opportunities to prevail 6-4, 6-4 after one hour and 33 minutes.

“Matches between friends are never easy, but you learn to play them over time,” admitted Bonzi. “We trained together for two years at the National Training Center, so we know each other’s strengths and weaknesses. I’m happy with my performance, and it’s good to come through in straight sets.”

Cressy fights past Barrere

Later in the afternoon, Cressy edged out No. 2 seed Gregoire Barrere of France 7-6(3), 7-6(4). The 126th-ranked US-American fired 22 aces and won 83 per cent of his first-service points to secure victory in one hour and 49 minutes.

“During the match, I felt like I had control, but I got distracted,” analyzed Cressy. “Fortunately, I managed to refocus. I hadn’t played many Challenger events in France before Rennes. It’s a great experience. I’ve known Benjamin since our time at the National Training Center. Against him, I’ll need to focus on my service, look for some break opportunities. And if that doesn’t happen, wait for the tie-break… as usual!”

Bonzi, champion of the Open Blot Rennes two years ago, is bidding for his ninth ATP Challenger Tour career title.

“It’s a good thing to play here. It means I’m getting to play five matches in a row, which hasn’t happened to me since my return to the circuit (after a wrist injury),” said Bonzi. “There’s one more step to go, and it will obviously be tough. But first, I’m going to take some time to recover before thinking about tomorrow’s match.”

Cressy could lift his fourth Challenger trophy. The 27-year-old Frenchman won the only previous meeting between the two at the ATP 250 tournament in Marseille, France in February this season.