Brotherly Battle: Dali Blanch Outlasts Ulises in M15 Monastir Clash



by JOVICA ILIC

Brotherly Battle: Dali Blanch Outlasts Ulises in M15 Monastir Clash
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The Blanch family breathes and lives for tennis, with three brothers and one sister trying to make a name for themselves on the Tour. The oldest, Ulises, was a trailblazer, making his first tennis steps at five and spreading his knowledge to his younger brothers and sister.

Ulises cracked the top-250 in 202, winning two Challenger titles before losing ground a bit, dropping out from the top-400 and combining Challengers with Futures. Dali Blanch, 20, has been playing professional tournaments since 2020, reaching his first Futures final last year and hoping for more good runs this season.

Ulises and Dali traveled to Tunisia and entered the M15 Monastir Futures. By the will of the draw, two brothers met in the first round, with Dali beating Ulises 6-1, 7-5 in an hour and 40 minutes.

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They played for the first time last year at the Poznan Challenger, with Ulises prevailing in three sets.

The younger Dali learned his lesson and ousted his brother in Monastir, making a flying start and sealing the deal with a late break in the second set. Dali fired 12 aces and bested Ulises behind the second serve. Both brothers earned nine break chances, and the younger showed the clutch.

Dali denied eight and clinched four breaks to emerge at the top without playing a decider. Dali held at 30 in the encounter's first game and overcame his brother's three game points in the next one for an early break and a 2-0 advantage.

The 20-year-old saved two break points in the third game, bringing it home and cementing the advantage.

Dali Blanch defeated his older brother Ulises in Monastir.

Ulises reduced the deficit in the fourth game and made another push on the return in the next one.

Dali denied two break chances and produced another vital hold for a 4-1 lead. Ulises missed his chances and struggled again on his serve in game six. The 25-year-old hit a double fault, losing serve and pushing his brother 5-1 ahead.

Dali served for the opener in game seven and held at love with an ace for 6-1 in no time and a boost. The younger Blanch pushed strong on the return at the beginning of the second set, seizing the fourth break point and moving a set and a break up.

Dali fired two aces in the second game, holding at love and extending his streak.

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The younger brother denied a break point in the fourth game, taking nine of the opening 11 games and dominating.

Ulises stepped in and grabbed 12 of the next 14 points, winning three straight games and opening a 4-3 advantage. Dali ended his downfall in style in game eight, erasing three break points and closing it with two aces for 4-4.

The younger Blanch served to stay in the set in game ten, producing a fine hold and sending the pressure to the other side. Dali grabbed a break at 15 in game 11, opening a pivotal 6-5 lead and moving over the top with two aces in game 12, celebrating his first win over his brother.