Zhang Starts Bergamo Challenger Campaign With Win In Three Sets

Zhizhen Zhang (photo: Antonio Milesi)

BERGAMO/STARNBERG, November 1, 2022

Zhizhen Zhang opened his title bid at the 17th edition of the Trofeo Perrel – Faip in Bergamo with a hard-fought first-round win over local wild card entry Giulio Zeppieri 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 on Tuesday. The No. 3 seed of the €45,730 ATP Challenger Tour hard-court event in Northern Italy withstood nine aces and broke his rival’s serve two times to prevail in one hour and 32 minutes.

“In the first set Giulio was unbelievable on serve, preventing me from responding well,” said Zhang. “He broke me in a game where I missed three easy balls. After losing the first, I tried to respond better, especially on the backhand side, and I focused even more on my serves, avoiding throwing away easy points. I’m happy to have recovered.”

World No. 99 Zhang, the first Chinese player to enter the Top 100 of the ATP Rankings, will next take on Finnish qualifier Otto Virtanen. The 21-year-old defeated Frenchman Manuel Guinard 6-4, 7-5 in one hour and 39 minutes.

In other action, Alexander Shevchenko knocked out the tournament’s top seed Kamil Majrchrzak of Poland 6-4, 7-5. The World No. 144 from Russia struck seven aces and won 72 per cent of his first-service points to advance in one hour and 26 minutes. Up next for Shevchenko will be Germany’s Yannick Hanfmann.

TROFEO PERREL – FAIP BERGAMO TUESDAY RESULTSSingles – First RoundDennis Novak (AUT) b. Cem Ilkel (TUR) 6-2 6-4Altug Celikbilek (TUR) b. Alibek Kachmazov (RUS) 6-4 2-6 7-5Alexander Shevchenko (RUS) b. Kamil Majchrzak (POL) 6-4 7-5Zhizhen Zhang (CIN) b. Giulio Zeppieri (ITA) 3-6 6-3 6-4Jan-Lennard Struff (GER) b. Flavio Cobolli (ITA) 6-1 6-2Liam Broady (GBR) b. Zizou Bergs (BEL) 7-5 4-1 ret.Otto Virtanen (FIN) b. Manuel Guinard (FRA) 6-4 7-5Jurij Rodionov (AUT) b. Fernando Verdasco (SPA) 6-2 6-3Luca Nardi (ITA) b. Tomas Machac (CZE) 7-5 7-6(3)Doubles – First RoundAndrea Vavassori / Matteo Vavassori (ITA-ITA) b. Dustin Brown / Szymon Walcow (JAM-POL) 7-6(4) 5-7 10-4Vit Kopriva / Vitaliy Sachko (CZE-UCR) b. Zvonimir Babic / Petros Tsitsipas (CRO-GRE) 7-5 6-2Fabian Fallert / Hendrik Jebens (GER-GER) b. Roman Jebavy / Adam Pavlasek (CZE-CZE) 6-4 6-3