Mitchell upsets Traralgon title winner
Ben Mitchell and John Millman's upset victories helped contribute to a productive day for Aussie hopes on Tuesday in Traralgon.
Melbourne Cup Day proved successful for the Aussies in the second stanza of the 2014 Latrobe City Traralgon ATP Challenger as Ben Mitchell sent last week’s title winner Bradley Klahn packing while John Millman upset fourth seed Hiroki Moriya.
Mitchell took it right up to Klahn from the outset, snaring the first set 6-4, but the American third seed was not going to roll over, marching through the second set 6-2 and setting up what was to be an entertaining decider.
However, after nearly two hours and eight match points, the Gold Coast boy was finally able to get the job done.
“I didn’t think I played too badly on the match points,” Mitchell said. “I did double fault on one of them but besides that, he came up with some really good shots.
“I was pretty relieved to pick up that half volley to win the match.”
Mitchell continues his love affair with Traralgon, having already won two ITF Futures events and a junior title here.
“Everyone makes me feel so at home here,” he said.
“I’ve always had good results and it’s been a great tournament for me.”
Meanwhile, John Millman bundled out last week’s semifinalist and fourth seed, Japan’s Hiroki Moriya.
In another impressive display from the Queenslander, the in-form Millman held firm to take the first set in a tiebreaker before running away with the second set 6-1.
Other Australians moving through to the second round on Tuesday included sixth seed Luke Saville, seventh seed Alex Bolt and Sydneysider Jordan Thompson.
Omar Jasika also continued his good form with a win over fellow wildcard Jake Eames, while another of last week’s semifinalists, John-Patrick Smith, had a close-fought win over China’s Di Wu.
On Monday, fifth seed Thanasi Kokkinakis progressed after taking out compatriot Greg Jones in three sets.