Félix Auger-Aliassime is the champion at the Tashkent Challenger following a dominant performance against Kamil Majchrzak. Auger-Aliassime had played seven matches ahead of Saturday’s final – three in qualifying and four in the main draw – but saved his best tennis for last, brushing aside the Pole 6-3, 6-2 in just over an hour.
The two began the match on even terms, with both holding on to serve until the eighth game of the first set, which saw Auger-Aliassime break to 30. The Canadian faced sturdy resistance from the unseeded World No.178, but was able to serve out the set on his fourth set point.
The second set was all Auger-Aliassime, who broke early and remained untouchable on serve, striking seven aces and making an impressive 80% of first serves. On his second match point it was, fittingly, an ace that claimed him the trophy – on a second serve, no less.
The title is Auger-Aliassime’s second of the season at the ATP Challenger Tour level and his fourth at that level overall. He ties Hyeon Chung, Mario Ancic and Guillermo Coria for third-most Challenger titles aged 18 or younger, behind Tomas Berdych (5) and Richard Gasquet (7).
The 18-year-old is currently projected to rise to a career-high ranking of No.109, continuing his steady rise up the ATP Rankings this season.
Auger-Aliassime and his team set a goal of Top 100 by the year’s end, which would secure him the ATP Star of Tomorrow award, given to the youngest player who finishes the season in the Top 100. Fellow Canadian Denis Shapovalov earned the distinction last season.