New Yorkers sweep Launceston
Americans Noah Rubin and Jamie Loeb each took titles in Launceston on Sunday while Australians featured in doubles wins.
Noah Rubin and Jamie Loeb have made it a clean sweep for America at the Neville Smith Forest Products Launceston International after winning their respective finals on Sunday.
Long Island native Rubin dominated his match against his Texan countryman Mitchell Krueger in extremely windy conditions, requiring only 53 minutes to post the 6-0 6-1 victory and earn himself a second ATP Challenger title – the last came in Charlottesville in late 2015.
“It felt great,” Rubin said. “I put a lot of pressure on him, I served very smart and I used my speed to run down some balls which helped me grow in confidence.”
The title marks a solid start to the season for the 20-year-old after qualifying for the Australian Open last month before losing a second round encounter to Roger Federer – the eventual champion saying post-match that he was very impressed by the young American.
“I thought he played really well. I feel like he’s going to have a great, consistent career,” Federer said.
As a result of the win in Launceston, Rubin will reach a career-high ranking of world No.162 while his opponent, Krueger, will also reach a new mark inside the top 200 for the first time.
The men’s doubles title was an all-Australian affair won convincingly by Bradley Mousley and Luke Saville over Alex Bolt and Andrew Whittington 6-2 6-1. Despite succumbing in the final, Bolt and Whittington were the best-performed Australians in singles, each reaching the quarterfinal stage.
Meanwhile, fellow New Yorker Jamie Loeb upset No.4 seed Tamara Zidansek of Slovenia to claim the women’s title. After taking a closely fought opening set, the world No.185 maintained her edge to take the match 7-6(4) 6-3 and notch up her seventh ITF Circuit title, but her first at the $60,000 level.
“I’m glad to close my Australian trip with a ‘W’,” said Loeb, 21, who saved five match points in her semifinal win over compatriot Asia Muhammad.
Of the Australian women, teenager Jaimee Fourlis was again a shining light, reaching the quarterfinal, while Monique Adamczak, who paired with American Nicole Melichar, took the doubles title.