The ATP Torino Challenger Award goes to the Portuguese Elias

The last act today at the Monviso Sporting Club, of the 2° edition of the ATP Torino Challenger (42.500 € and hospitality) in collaboration with the Ace Tennis Center. To compete for the title of the individual draw the Spanish Enrique Lopez-Perez, 24 years old from Madrid classified 300th Atp, with a tennis skill decisively higher, as shown by the results obtained  in the last two weeks, and the Portuguese Gastao Elias, number 117 Atp, finalist in Naples a few weeks ago and already number 103 of the 2015 ranking. More powerful the tennis of the first one and more “stealth” the tennis of second one thanks to the high school touches that created problems to the rivals during the whole week in Turin.

Wind on the central, a variable that is to be considered in the analysis of the match. Lopez-Perez, thanks to his strength in the shot, was less subject to its conditioning in the opening. On 2-1, after a perfect game won with an ace, the Hispanic hit the first break, going up to 3-1. Then to 4-1. In the sixth game he had other three consecutive opportunities to increase the difference and to go up to 5-1, but the Portuguese remedied reducing the difference (2-4). Again the Madrilenian on the defensive in the successive game, for the 5-2. Elias tried the reaction but following his own service he capitulated in the game number 9 of the set, ahead of the powerful and surgical service of the rival. Lopez-Perez forward 6-3 in 38 minutes.

Second set with another good opening by the Hispanic, in advantage of one break and 40-15 on his own service. Suddenly the set changed direction, caused by two double faults by Lopez-Perez and a found top form of Elias, more patience and ready to take advantage of the rival’s errors, and also good in the alternation of the shots’ rhythm. So he tied before the score (2-2), then he placed the decisive strike in the tenth game, with a break at zero and a peremptory closing with an ace: 6-4 for Elias and all to be redone with the decision resended to the third set.

Similar evolution, at least for the opening part, to the one of the second set. Lopez-Perez forward by one break (2-1) and service. He didn’t take advantage of the opportunity and he had been tied by the Lusitanian which didn’t miss nothing from this point of the match. On the contrary he increased the concentration and the rhythm going up on 4-2 with the first break of the set. Then 5-2 and a new break to close the contest 6-2 and raise his arms to the sky: “I am happy for the win – he said enthusiastically – and I felicitate myself with my rival which played very well in the last two weeks. A very good week, even if I worked very hard and I won four match out of five, included the final, in three sets”. The key of the decisive act?: “I believe the mental one.”

At a certain point of the last set he felt more pressure and I had been good to not give up. With this win I will join for the first time in my career in the top 100. I hope to go on in this season as it is”. First Challenger’ success in the individual of the season for Elias, which already got four in his own career. “In the next week I will be in competition in Portugal at a very important tournament for me and I hope to go on with the positive set. Today we didn’t play well – he concluded – by reasons of the negative atmosphere conditions, but we have in any case put our souls on the field.

Congratulations to the organization for the excellent tournament”.

Roberto Bertellino – ACE Tennis Center Press Office