Opelka Wins First Title In New York


New York Open, USA

Championship Match: [89] Reilly Opelka (USA) vs. [154] Brayden Schnur (CAN)

At stake was a first ATP World Tour title as well as valuable ranking points. For Schnur, this was his break through tournament; he had never won a match on the ATP World Tour until he won his first match here. Yet, despite that, the Canadian has played with the belief that he belongs. For Opelka, this was a chance to prove the hype about his game was valid.


Opelka was focused and perhaps being slightly more experienced, he did not show any signs of nerves early. He served well and returned even better. The American broke twice to win the first set in less than twenty minutes (6-1). The Canadian had to shake off the set and his disappointment and fight his way through the nerves. As usually happens, after a lopsided set, he did just that. Despite facing four break points against his serve in the second set, Schnur doggedly held on to his serve to force the tiebreak.


Opelka served for the match at 7-6 up in the tiebreak and despite his brilliant serving all match, he made his second double fault of the match at championship point and then lost his next service point as well. Schnur hit his first serve and Opelka sent the return long to lose the second set. The Canadian saved two championship points to force the American to think a little about squandered opportunities.

Reilly Opelka (serveandrally original)


Opelka never gave his opponent any opportunity to break his serve; however, as the end approached the American got a little tight. He failed to capitalize on vital break opportunities that could have ended the match in straight sets, and he lost both his serves late in the second set tiebreak. Yet, credit to Schnur who withstood the aces and onslaught of pace from Opelka to force the match to three sets. The American had three more opportunities to win the third set without the need for a tiebreak; however, once again he failed to capitalize with some tentative play.

Reilly Opelka (serveandrally original)


The third set tiebreak was a battle of nerves as they traded mini-breaks. Opelka served for the match for the second time at 6-5 up and a brilliant return from Schnur denied him the victory. Yet, after fighting tooth and nail to hang in the match, the Canadian was done in by a double fault. Perhaps a tad fitting considering that he won the second set tiebreak with the help of a double fault from Opelka. For the third time, the American served for the match (8-7 up) and this time he was not tentative as he served out the match with his forty-third ace to claim the hard-fought victory. He won 6-1, 6-7(7), 7-6(7) to claim his first singles title.

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