O’Connell Triumphs At Home, Wins Split Open

Christopher O’Connell (photo: Split Open)

SPLIT/STARNBERG, April 24, 2022

Christopher O’Connell from Australia is the champion of the 2022 Split Open. The No. 3 seed of the €45,730 ATP Challenger Tour clay-court tournament tournament hosted by the Teniski Klub Split benefited from the retirement of Zsombor Piros in the singles final on Sunday.

The 27-year-old Sydney native, who is based in Split, was leading 6-3, 2-0 after 46 minutes when the Hungarian was forced to stop playing due to a back injury.

O’Connell battled his way to the title match through the top half of the draw without dropping a set. He defeated Frenchman Gregoire Barrere, Lukas Klein of Slovakia , No. 8 sed Kacper Zuk from Poland and Italian qualifier Matteo Arnaldi.

By lifting his third ATP Challenger career trophy, his first since Fairfield in the United States in October 2019, the World No. 147 earned €6,190 in prize money as well as 80 ATP Ranking points.

“This is like my second home and it is an awesome feeling to win here,” O’Connell said. “I decided to come here in April last year and it is a really good base for me, playing in Europe, as I like to play on clay. 

“It is not the ideal way of winning a tournament and I feel for Zsombor but he had a good week and hopefully his back isn’t too bad and he can continue his good run this year. On a personal level, I am happy how I feel on court and I hope I can continue throughout the year. I will be off to Rome tomorrow and then I will have a week off and come back to Split.”

Lammons/Olivetti earn doubles title

On Saturday, Nathaniel Lammons from the United States and Frenchman Albano Olivetti captured the doubles title. The second seeds fought past the tournament’s top favourites Sadio Doumbia and Fabien Reboul of France 4-6, 7-6(7), 10-7. The encounter lasted one hour and 54 minutes.

By winning their first team title, Lammons and Olivetti split €2,670 in prize money and pocketed 80 ATP Doubles Ranking points.