* Milan, Italy, €43,000+H (Outdoor Clay) : The first part of 2017 wasn't the most successful one for Argentine players on the Challenger Tour, but they will conquer back-to-back titles in Italy, with Federico Delbonis and Guido Pella reaching the final in Milan.
Federico Delbonis will play in his 13th Challenger final and the third in a row after a 6-1 4-6 6-0 triumph against the top seed Marco Cecchinato. The match lasted 2 hours and it was all about the Argentine player in the first and third sets, while Marco managed to show more only in set number 2.
Delbonis faced just 1 break point in sets he won and he was all over Cecchinato on the return as well, creating 20 break points in total, 15 alone in the first set. Italian was in all kind of troubles right from the opening game, facing 4 break points, and that hold was all he could do in the first part of the match, losing the next 6 games without any rhythm in the points (Delbonis needed 8 break points to take the 5th game).
After a very slow start, Marco found the right drive in set number 2, consolidating his game on serve and creating more chances on the return as well. He had 6 break points and one break in game 5 was enough to clinch the set for him by 6-4 and send the match into a decider.
There, his game fell apart completely, winning jut 7 points in 6 games, as Federico sailed through towards the place in the final.
Guido Pella will also compete in his 13th Challenger final, the first one since Montevideo in November 2015.
Guido took down experienced Spaniard Tommy Robredo 6-3 6-4 in 73 minutes, saving 2 out of 3 break points and stealing rival's serve 3 times. It was a solid battle between two fine clay courters, but Pella served better and made more damage with his first serve.
The result remained with serve in the first 7 games and Pella scored the crucial break in game 8, closing the set on own serve a few minutes later for a 6-3. From 2-1 down in the second set, the Argentine rattled off 4 games in a row, including breaks in games 5 and 7, and Robredo was able to annul only one of them, cutting the deficit to 5-3, before Pella crossed the finish line with a love service game in the 10th game. Semi-final results: