Carlos Poch Grandin
Carlos Poch-Gradin from Spain, the winner of three singles titles from four tournaments during the month.
His four tournaments, all played on a clay court, saw him visit Latvia, Lithuania and Poland winning 36 sets with the loss of just 5 sets.
The first tournament was held in Jurmala, Latvia. Carlos, seeded 5, faced Latvian Janis Mellups, a wildcard entry, in the opening round and got the tournament off to a great start winning 60 61. Carlos was to maintain this form in the following rounds as he moved through the draw without losing a set and into his first singles final of 2007. In the final he came up against Blazej Koniusz of Poland who had an impressive run to the final himself with the loss of only 1 set. Carlos managed to win a close first set before dominating the second set to win the match 64 61. With this victory Carlos claimed his first singles title since June 2006.
Next it was onto Lithuania where he was once again seeded 5. Here, at the tournament held in Vilnius, Carlos was not to make it to a second successive singles final. Despite winning the first three rounds without dropping a set he was stopped in a close semi final contest in straight sets by the French former top 100 ranked player Nicolas Coutelot, final score 64 64.
Carlos moved onto Poland for his next two tournaments, the first being in Poznan. Seeded 4, Carlos once again won through the first three rounds without losing a set to reach his third semi final of the month. The number 2 seed, David Novak, provided the opposition in the semi final and although Carlos took the opening set 64, Novak came back strong in the next set winning it 61 to level the match at a set a piece. Carlos showed great character to come back from the disappointment of only winning one game in the previous set to edge a tight final set 75 and move into his second singles final of the year. Italian Alessandro Accardo who, like Carlos, plays left-handed was all that stood between Carlos and another title. The first set proved a close encounter with Carlos coming out on top 64. Spurred on by this he powered on to secure victory by winning the following set 62. Carlos’ win/loss record in singles finals in 2007 now read 2/0. Could he make it three titles from three finals in his final tournament of the month? It was onto Opole, Poland to find out.
It’s never easy playing against an opponent who is playing in his home country and that is exactly what Carlos was faced with here in Opole, Poland in the first two rounds. Fortunately Carlos, seeded 3, came through both rounds in straight sets, 63 76(5) and 63 64 respectively. Seeded opposition in the shape of Karel Triska of the Czech Republic waited in the quarterfinal. Here Carlos was not to continue his impressive record of winning the opening three rounds of every tournament this month in straight sets but nevertheless he once more won through to the semi final with a 64 67(2) 63 win. Polish player Robert Godlewski, whom Carlos had beaten in Latvia earlier in the month 62 60, took the opening set of their semi final clash 63. The only other occasion this month that Carlos found himself a set down he lost the match. However, history was not to repeat itself as Carlos came back to record a 36 63 63 victory and move into a third singles final of the year. The final was to be contested against the unseeded British player, Edward Seator. Those watching this match and expecting a closely fought final were left disappointed as Carlos swept the Brit aside with a crushing 61 60 win.
What a month August proved to be for Carlos. Not only did he reach his first three singles finals of 2007 but he also won them. Carlos also competed in the doubles events at each of the four tournaments he played this month but, despite playing with four different partners, he was defeated at the semi final stage in straight sets each time. This aside he is now currently at his highest ranking in doubles at 168.
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