The 5th edition of Play In Challenger Lille was not a success for French players, none of them reaching semi-finals, whereas 3 top seeds will be there this Saturday.
Maxime Janvier had to withdraw
For the first time since the beginning of Play In Challenger Lille, no French players will be in semi final. Maxime Janvier (ranked 346th), the last of them, did not manage to go until the end of his quarter final against Max Purcell (ranked 99th, top seed). Whereas the Picard was playing at the same level than the Australian, he fall down on the court at the end of the first set (6-5) and his left ankle seriously turned. He was not able to play until the end of the tie-break and had to withdraw, with a lot of sadness in his mind and on the verge of tears. In semi-final, Max Purcell will be opposed to Belgium Michael Geerts (ranked 233rd) who needed a bit more than 2 hours to defeat Turkish Altug Celikbilek (ranked 208th), 6-7, 6-4, 6-2.
And Gabriel Diallo cracked…
Another 3 sets match for the third quarter final of the day with the qualification of Austrian Jurij Rodionov (ranked 131st, second seed) against Diallo (ranked 212th), 2-6, 7-5, 6-1. Young Canadian (21 years) from Montréal, new favorite of Lille audience, made a strong start and had several occasions in the second set, but eventually saw his opponent coming back into the match, and made a lot of unforced errors. His adventure comes to an end but the man from Quebec became very popular in the North. Rodionov will be faced in semi final to Otto Virtanen (ranked 139th, 4th seed) strong winner in two sets of Ukrainian Vitaliy Sachko (ranked 309th), 6-2, 6-4.
The day of Saturday will also be highlighted by doubles final, with once again on the court Max Purcell, associated to Jason Taylor, against Jamaican veteran Dustin Brown and Aisam-Ui-Haq Qureshi.