Australia, 20 February 2023 | Leigh Rogers

Thanasi Kokkinakis and Max Purcell both won ATP Challenger Tour singles titles this week.

Kokkinakis was crowned champion at Manama in Bahrain, securing the title with a 6-1 6-4 victory against Jordan wildcard Abedallah Shelbayh in the final.

The 26-year-old Australian fired 12 aces and did not drop serve in the one-hour and 36-minute championship match.

This delivers Kokkinakis his fifth career ATP Challenger title – and his first won on hard court since October 2018.

Kokkinakis is set to be rewarded in the rankings for his effort, with the world No.141 projected to return to the world’s top 100.

This also improves Kokkinakis’ season record in singles to 10 wins from 13 matches, which includes five victories against top 100-ranked opponents.

Max Purcell needed three hours and seven minutes to fight past American Nicolas Moreno de Alboran in the Chennai Open final in India.

The 24-year-old Australian bravely saved two match points in their epic 5-7 7-6(2) 6-4 encounter.

This is Purcell’s third career ATP Challenger singles title – and first since July 2021.

The reigning Wimbledon doubles champion has vowed to make singles his priority this season and is off to a promising start, having also qualified for the Australian Open last month.

World No.203 Purcell has won 11 of his 14 singles matches so far this season and is projected to rise to a new career-high ranking inside the world’s top 160 when the updated ATP Tour rankings are released later today.

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