Here it is! The so expected entry list of 2019 Play In Challenger has just been released! Nicolas Mahut, Steve Darcis, Viktor Troicki, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, Grégoire Barrère, Corentin Moutet, Antoine Hoang, Jiri Vesely…a lot of bankable players will come and play from next 18th March on Tennis Club Lillois Lille Métropole’s facilities ! Small staff review…
It is well known of tennis fans: 3 weeks before the beginning of a challenger tournament, is released the famous « entry list ». It is simply the list of players joining main single draw of the tournament. True, they can withdraw until the last moment, and this list is to be analysed with lot of cautious, but it gives however a good trend of the level of the event, and the quality we will have the chance to see. And regarding quality, the next edition of Play In Challenger wil be served!
Give honour when honour is due : let’s start by Grégoire Barrère, who will defend his title ! Starting from qualifying last year, the French player is now ranked 125th: what a progression! His second title in Quimper challenger captured in February, and a second round in Marseille (ATP 250), show that Gregoire took another important step. We are looking forward to seeing him again!
Nicolas Mahut will also be there. Already here last year, native of Angers comes back in the Métropole, which will delight his fans. Capturing doubles title in the last Australian Open with Pierre-Hugues Herbert, the last missing Grand Slam to his record, the French player no longer needs to be presented anymore: Davis Cup winner, currently ranked number 3 in double (n°1 in 2016), 37th in single in 2014, winner of 4 tournaments in single on the ATP Tour… So, he is a player who will have left a footprint in the tennis history, who will play again on TCLLM’s courts.
Another big name of tennis: Steve Darcis. The Belgium player, ranked 38th barely two years ago, and double Davis Cup runner up, makes a strong come back after a year 2018 off courts. Reaching semi final in Pune (ATP 250) for his first tournament of the year, and runner up in Cherbourg one week ago, the « shark » is currently in good shape and will be eager to keep shining in Play In Challenger, where he will evolve “at home”.
3 international stars are expected in TCLLM ‘s courts: Viktor Troicki, Guillermo Garcia Lopez and Jiri Vesely ! The Serbian player, ranked 12th in 2011, is of course well known for his Davis Cup victory in 2010 against France. We all still have in mind his victorious match against Michaël Llodra…The Spanish player, ranked 23rd in 2011, captured 5 titles on ATP Tour, and already upset Rafael Nadal and Stan Wawrinka. As to the Czech player, strong top 100 member for several years (ranked 35th in 2015), he is one of the most talented left-handed players of the circuit. He especially defeated Novak Djokovic in Monte Carlo in 2016. Do not forget Ukrainian Sergiy Stakhovsky, ranked 31st in 2010, who hit the headlines when defeated Roger Federer in Wimbledon in 2013…
Among our French rising players, let’s mention Antoine Hoang and Corentin Moutet, who also competed last year. Not far from top 100, and after already shining this year (runner up in Rennes challenger and first victory in an ATP 250, in Montpellier, for Antoine, and winner of Chennai challenger for Corentin), they will also like to illustrate to follow their progression. Let’s also mention Quentin Halys, young hope of French tennis. Maxime Janvier and Constant Lestienne, « local tennis players», are also coming back this year.
An untypical player will have to be followed closely: Dustin Brown. German player with Jamaican origins, the man with the most famous dreadlocks of ATP Tour has a rapid and spectacular game. No doubt he will make the show once on court. Ranked 64th in 2016, he is notably known to have shined in Wimbledon, where he already upset Lleyton Hewitt and…Rafael Nadal.
Performers are known, rendez-vous now in less than 3 weeks to experience together this second edition of Play In Challenger !
Play In Challenger (ATP Challenger tournament 54 160 $ + H)
From 18 to 24 March at Tennis Club Lillois Lille Métropole, 22 rue du Mal Assis in Lille
Free entrance from Monday 18 March to Thursday 21 March
Friday 22 March : 5 euros (2 euros for children under 12)
Saturday 23 March and Sunday 24 March : 10 euros (5 euros for children under 12)
Week pass for FFT licensees : 20 euros (one afterwork offered, on Wednesday 20 March or Friday 22 March)