Molleker Masters Galan, Returns To Neckarcup Semis

Rudolf Molleker (photo: NECKARCUP/

HEILBRONN, June 9, 2023

Rudolf Molleker continued his fine run of form this week by reaching the semi-finals of the 2023 NECKARCUP. The 22-year-old German, 2018 champion of the award-winning ATP Challenger Tour event in Heilbronn, fought past third-seeded Colombian Daniel Elahi Galan 6-4, 5-7, 7-5 on a sunny Friday afternoon.

In front of his home crowd on Center Court, Molleker withstood 16 aces, broke his rival’s serve three times and saved two match points in the third set to secure victory in two hours and 29 minutes.

“The match was incredibly close and I thank the spectators for the support. It made it easier for me to turn the game around. Reaching the semi-finals is a huge step for my team and me, and it was only a matter of time to get back to winning ways. I’m super happy that it’s happening in Heilbronn,” said Molleker after the match.

The wild card entry will appear in his first semi-final on the ATP Challenger Tour since the 2019 Poznan Open, facing Facundo Diaz Acosta of Argentina, a 7-5, 6-3 winner over Australian Akira Santillan. The encounter on Court 1 lasted one hour and 35 minutes.

Martinez prevails in more than three hours

Later in the afternoon, Pedro Martinez battled past eight-seeded Russian Pavel Kotov 6-4, 4-6, 7-6(3) in the longest match of the day. The World No. 135 from Spain won three points less than his opponent but prevailed following a solid tie-break in the third set after three hours and five minutes.

The final quarterfinals match between No. 5 seed Matteo Arnaldi and second-seeded Spaniard Jaume Munar was suspended due to darkness at the score of 1-6, 6-4 ,5-5.

FRIDAY RESULTS Singles –Quarterfinals[WC] R. Molleker (GER) d [3] D. Galan (COL) 64 57 75P. Martinez (ESP) d [8] P. Kotov 64 46 76(3)F. Diaz Acosta (ARG) d [Q] A. Santillan (AUS) 75 63

Doubles – SemifinalsC. Frantzen (GER) / H. Jebens (GER) d [4] A. Golubev (KAZ) / D. Molchanov (UKR) 64 76(3)QuarterfinalsP. Martinez (ESP) / A. Pellegrino (ITA) d [WC] R. Molleker (GER) / H. Squire (GER) 76(4) 62