Bernard Tomic overcomes slow start, wins in Chennai

Bernard Tomic seeks the title at the Challenger 100 event in Chennai

by Jovica Ilic
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Bernard Tomic overcomes slow start, wins in Chennai
© Stream screenshot

After winning the Futures title in Chennai during his first professional tournament in India, Bernard Tomic stayed at the same site and entered the Challenger 100 Chennai Open. Bernard met the Polish teen Olaf Pieczkowski and prevailed 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 after two hours and nine minutes, making a winning start.

Tomic fired nine aces and lost serve three times from six chances offered to his rival. Pieczkowski fought well, saving six out of eight break points and squandering a 5-3 advantage in the final set before falling in the tie break.

The Aussie squandered a 40-15 lead in the encounter's first game and lost serve after a forced error. The Pole grabbed the second game with a service winner, cementing the lead and settling into a fine rhythm.

Bernard Tomic & Olaf Pieczkowski, Chennai Challenger 2024© Stream screenshot

Bernard denied two break points in the third game and closed it with an ace to get his name on the scoreboard.

Pieczkowski held at love in game four for 3-1 before facing three break points in game six. The Pole denied them and held with a service winner for 4-2. Tomic sprayed a forehand error in the seventh game, losing serve and falling 5-2 behind.

Olaf served for the opener in game eight and Bernard showed no interest in returning, allowing his rival to hold at love and wrap up the first set in 32 minutes. The Aussie raised his level in the second set, dropping four points behind the initial shot and keeping the pressure on the other side.

Tomic closed the fifth game with a forehand down the line winner and caused the rival's mistake two games later for 4-3.

Bernard Tomic made a winning start at the Chennai Challenger.

Pieczkowski held at love in game eight and served to stay in the set at 4-5.

A teenager netted a backhand and offered his opponent three break points. Olaf netted a routine forehand on the first, suffering a break at love and allowing Bernard to force a decider. The Pole missed a break point in the first game before hitting a double fault at 1-2, gifting the Aussie two break points.

The young gun denied them and held for more drama. Pieczkowski closed the sixth game at love and pushed strong on the return in the next one. Olaf broke Bernard at 15 with a forehand down the line winner and grabbed the eighth game at 30 for 5-3.

Tomic served to stay in the match in game nine and landed a service winner for a hold at love.

Bernard Tomic, Chennai Challenger 2024© Stream screenshot

Bernard had one more chance to prolong the battle, and he used it with both hands.

The Pole denied the first break point in game ten after an entertaining rally and a forehand down the line winner. However, the Aussie converted the second with a forced error, climbing back to 5-5 and extending his chances.

They served well in games 11 and 12, introducing a deciding tie break. Olaf hit a double fault in the third point and missed a routine forehand a few moments later to fall 3-1 behind. Tomic earned another mini-break in the sixth point and created four match points with a forehand crosscourt winner at 5-2.

The Aussie seized the first with a powerful forehand, passing a challenging obstacle and moving into the second round.

Bernard Tomic
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