Sebastian Korda is making it look too easy.
On Sunday, the 20-year-old American punctuated his Top 100 breakthrough with a second ATP Challenger Tour title in Quimper, France. Dialed in from the first ball, Korda blitzed Slovakia’s Filip Horansky 6-1, 6-1 in a mere 50 minutes to seal his victory at the Open Quimper Bretagne Occidentale.
Projected to enter the Top 100 of the FedEx ATP Rankings for the first time on Monday, it was a week the Florida native will never forget. He not only becomes the youngest American to win multiple Challenger titles since 2017, but will also be the youngest from his country to crack the Top 100 since an 18-year-old Frances Tiafoe five years ago.
“I always knew I had the game to do this,” said Korda. “It’s just been about getting my body right and really having some good people around me that push me every single day. It’s a lot of little things but they are so important to get to where I want to be. It took some pressure off my shoulders when I heard I cracked the Top 100 for sure, but it’s been a good week in Quimper and I’m happy to get my second Challenger title.”
Photo: Corinne Dubreuil/FFT
Seeded second at an ATP Challenger Tour event for the first time, Korda was forced to embrace the role of favourite throughout the week. After surviving a pair of marathon encounters to open the tournament, including one that saw him save a match point and rally from 1/5 down in the deciding tie-break, Korda found his rhythm.
The 20-year-old’s backhand exploded off the indoor hard courts at the Parc des Expositions, defeating an in-form Benjamin Bonzi in straight sets in Saturday’s semi-final, followed by an efficient championship performance against Horansky. He fired nine aces and converted five of 16 break points to defeat the Slovakian in under an hour.
“The week started out pretty tough,” Korda added. “I played a guy [Tristan Lamasine] who was playing some really good tennis. But I just stayed with him from down 1/5 in the third-set breaker. I pulled through that match and had another three-setter in the second round. I started getting more comfortable and today I just played an incredible match. I just knew what to expect and executed a good gameplan today.”
Photo: Corinne Dubreuil/FFT
Projected to rise to a career-high No. 88 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, Korda has soared more than 150 spots in the past year, cementing himself as one of the top contenders to qualify for the Next Gen ATP Finals in November. The American has now won 14 of his last 15 matches overall, also including a maiden Challenger title to cap his 2020 campaign in Eckental, Germany, and a first ATP Tour final appearance in Delray Beach to kick off 2021.
Having withdrawn from the upcoming Quimper-2 Challenger with a groin ailment, he will next appear at the ATP Challenger Tour stop in Biella, Italy, beginning 8 February.
Youngest Americans To Win Multiple Challenger Titles (since 2010)
|Taylor Fritz||17 years, 11 months||2015 Fairfield|
|Frances Tiafoe||18 years, 8 months||2016 Stockton|
|Michael Mmoh||19 years, 6 months||2017 Lexington|
|Stefan Kozlov||19 years, 8 months||2017 Las Vegas|
|Ernesto Escobedo||20 years, 3 months||2016 Monterrey|
|Sebastian Korda||20 years, 6 months||2021 Quimper|
|Reilly Opelka||20 years, 8 months||2018 Bordeaux|
|Jack Sock||20 years, 9 months||2013 Winnetka|