January 15th, 2018
Top-seeded Marti Wins USTA Pro Circuit Title in Naples, Fla.
Top-seeded Javier Marti of Spain won the weekend title at the Casal Men’s Futures Sponsored by Germain BMW Naples, a $15,000 USTA Pro Circuit clay court event, in the final defeating No. 8-seeded Louis Wessels of Germany 6-4, 6-0 in Naples, Fla., held at the Academia Sanchez-Casal.
“It was a great week for all of us,” the 25-year-old Marti told the media afterwards. “What was a surprise was the high level that everyone played at. I didn’t know what to expect here. The people here weren’t ranked very high, but I think a lot of the players will go far. The college players, especially, show a lot of potential.”
Marti, who entered the event at No. 258 on the ATP rankings, did not drop a set in beating four Americans en route to the final: Tyler Mercier, Collin Johns, local former ATP player Jesse Witten, and Strong Kirchheimer. Kirchheimer put in the top American effort in the event as the former Northwestern University player from North Carolina lost 6-3, 7-5 to Marti in the semifinals.
Wessels needed to put on his hard hat to reach the final, in the first three rounds recording three-set victories. In the semifinals he upset No. 4 seed Fred Gil of Portugal 6-4, 7-5.
It was Marti’s first ITF/USTA Pro Circuit title of 2018 after last year claiming six, all in Europe and all on clay. The 19-year-old Wessels fell to 0-3 in ITF/USTA Pro Circuit career finals, last year losing in his first two at Ueberlinger, Germany, and at Damme, Belgium, both on clay.
In the doubles final the unseeded team of American Trent Bryde and Wessels upset the top-seeded team of Portugal’s Gil and Spain’s Jaume Pla Malfetto 6-1, 1-6, 11-9 for the championship.
For more info go to www.usta.com/en/home/pro/pro-tennis-events/ProCircuit.html.