Photo: Tommy HindleyNicolas Mahut (FRA)
POITIERS, FRANCE: The last time the ITF Pro Circuit saw Nicolas Mahut in singles action was back in early 2003 when he claimed the last of his five ITF Pro Circuit singles titles with two triumphs in his homeland. In his last appearance on the Circuit he reached the quarterfinal of the France F8 tournament held in Melun; a tournament which had also featured Jo-Wilfried Tsonga whom Mahut had defeated in the first round.
Now, ten years later, he has returned to the Circuit as he looks to return from a knee injury. Prior to this week’s tournament, he warmed up by competing in a Challenger event in Cherbourg, reaching the second round. This Challenger tournament marked the Frenchman’s return to competitive play for the first time since early October 2012.
Now ranked at 145 in the latest released ATP rankings, Mahut, a wild card entrant in Poitiers, is the top seed for the tournament he last won in 2003. Mahut opened with a tough 64 67(5) 64 workout against another wild card, Calvin Hemery, who, like Mahut, was from France.
Another close match followed in yesterday’s (Wednesday 13 March) second round clash with Denys Mylokostov. Although settled in straight sets by Mahut, his Ukrainian opponent put up a real fight before eventually going down 76(4) 64.
Now into the quarterfinals, Mahut remains on course for a title winning return to the ITF Pro Circuit and you can keep up with results on the tournament’s home page which will feature all the days results uploaded soon after close of play each day.
Have you been lucky enough to attend this tournament and witness the return of Mahut?
Do you think Mahut’s ITF Pro Circuit return will see him successful in his title quest?
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