Redlicki finishes runner-up
Dominik Koepfer took home his third career title on Sunday at the Subaru Sherbrooke Futures presented by Énergie 106.1. Sanctioned by the International Tennis Federation (ITF), the tournament, which offers $25, 000 U.S. in total prize money, was held from March 3-11, 2018 at the Christian Bourque indoor tennis courts of the Rock Forest Recreation Centre in Sherbrooke.
Sunday’s match featured two players who had very different paths to the final. Dominik Koepfer of Germany came into the tournament as the fifth seed, having reached the semi-final at last week’s Gatineau Futures. Michael Redlick, on the other hand, had to play three qualifying matches to reach the main draw before proceeding to eliminate the tournament’s second, third and eighth seeds on his way to Sunday’s final.
Since the start of the tournament, Redlicki’s opponents have had a difficult time returning his powerful serve, but on Sunday Koepfer seemed up to the task and managed to fire a few aces of his own. In a tight first set, both players played at an exceptional level, committing few mistakes and playing some exciting rallies, much to the delight of the packed crowd. It was the American who benefitted from a costly mistake by his opponent in the tiebreak to take the lead in the match.
After going up a break early in the second, Koepfer was unable to serve out the set. Just as it seemed that the match was headed to a second tiebreak, the German managed to break his opponent to level out the score. His momentum continued into the decider, where he again went up an early break and then broke his opponent again to take the match and the title by a score of 6(3)-7, 7-5, 6-2.
After his victory, Koepfer reflected on his title run in Sherbrooke. “This has been a great week of tennis. I want to congratulate Michael on his match today, you have been playing exceptional tennis all week and I wish you the best for your upcoming tournaments. Thanks to the organizing, the volunteers and the ball kids for this wonderfully run event. Finally, I would like to thank the fans for coming out and supporting us all week. This is definitely one of the best attended Futures tournaments that I have played in.”
Redlicki was coming into the tournament with no singles ranking since 2013, having never previously played in a final on the professional circuit. His last semi-final dates back to 2012, when he made a deep run at a Futures tournament in Florida. For his part, Koepfer won two singles titles in 2017 along with one doubles titles and moved up over 200 places in the rankings. He is scheduled to play in Drummondville next week.
The Subaru Sherbrooke Futures presented by Énergie 106.1 was the second in a series of three tournaments that will be played in Quebec during the months of February and March. The event will be followed by the Drummondville National Bank Challenger.
*Feature photo: Yves Longpré