ATP Kaohsiung Challenger: Yuki Bhambri wins marathon match to reach final
Yuki Bhambri overcame American Jack Sock in an epic semi-final encounter lasting two hours and 49 minutes at the ATP challenger event in Kaohsiung. The Indian defeated the second seed 6-7 (10), 7-5, 6-3 to book a final berth against top seed Yen-Hsun Lu.
Bhambri was constantly under pressure in the first set with the American generating six break point opportunities compared to his none. But Bhambri held on to prevent a break of serve and force the set into a tie-break.
The tie-break that followed was neck and neck, with the pressure from Sock finally paying off as the set went in favour of the American 12-10. In the second set, Sock got an early break and it appeared that he would run away with the contest.
However, the gritty Indian made an emphatic comeback to break him twice to take the match to a deciding set. The first two sets had taken more than two hours to complete and it was left to the endurance levels of the two individuals in the final set.
The final set was another topsy-turvy passage of play with both players being broken. Finally though, Bhambri managed to secure an extra break of serve to close out the set 6-3 and book a final spot.
Bhambri will have very less time to recover from his epic encounter as he faces Yen-Hsun Lu today itself in the final as yesterday’s play was abandoned due to rain.
This would be followed by the doubles final, where Bhambri paired with Chieh-Fu Wang, would clash against the Columbian duo of Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah.
Meanwhile, in the Malaysian Open qualifiers second seed Somdev Devvarman overcame American Eric Butorac 6-1 6-3 in 43 minutes to book a spot in the final round of qualification. Devvarman would face Jean Julien Rojer for a place in the main draw of the ATP 250 Malaysian Open.