(photo credit: OFRA FRIEDMAN, ITA)
Amir Weintraub will return to the world’s top 300 for the first time in almost a year on Monday despite losing 6-2, 6-1 to Germany’s Peter Gojowczyk in the final of the ATP Challenger Tour tournament in Nanchang, China on Sunday.
The 29-year-old Israeli, who began the event ranked at No. 376 in the world, is expected to climb a little under 100 places to around No. 280 after reaching his fourth career final on the Challenger circuit, his first since May 2012. Weintraub is still searching for his first Challenger Tour title.
Gojowczyk (170) dominated Sunday’s final right from the start, breaking Weintraub in his first two service games and wrapping up the win in 51 minutes, taking the final five games of the contest.
Nevertheless, Weintraub will be extremely encouraged with his performance in Nanchang after dropping as low as No. 625 in the world at the start of May, struggling in his return from a lengthy injury absence.
Weintraub will look to continue and gather momentum when he participates in the Challenger tournament this week in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
In other tennis news, Steve Darcis completed a thrilling comeback to send Belgium into its first Davis Cup final in more than 100 years on Sunday, winning the deciding fifth rubber against Argentina.
The host had trailed 2-1 overnight, but world No. 15 David Goffin crushed Diego Schwartzman 6-3, 6-2, 6-1 to level things up and then Darcis, roared on by home fans in the Forest National, fought past Federico Delbonis 6-4, 2-6, 7-5, 7-6(3).
Belgium, which has never won the team competition, will have home advantage against Britain, which reached its first final in 37 years by beating Australia as Andy Murray outclassed Bernard Tomic in straight sets to give the Brits an unbeatable 3-1 lead.Reuters contributed to this report.