28-year old Roman Borvanov from Moldova is our featured player for the month of November. Borvanov, who made his debut in the Davis Cup back in 2006, competed in a mixture of clay and hard court tournaments during the month which saw him visit Mexico and the Dominican Republic.
Borvanov started the month still looking for a first singles title since January 2008 and an appearance in an ITF Pro Circuit singles final since early November 2009. Well, he didn’t have much longer to wait for either! The month began with a tournament on the clay courts of a Futures event in Guadalajara, Mexico where he was named the No. 8 seed in the singles event. Following a comfortable straight sets victory over a Mexican Wild Card entrant he needed a close three sets to see off American player Maciek Sykut in round two having dropped the opening set. The quarterfinal saw him take on the third seed, Mexico’s Daniel Garza. This match saw him repeat his 64 62 winning score line from the first round and move into the semifinal and a match against another American opponent, Dennis Zivkovic who was seeded seventh. Once again Borvanov dropped only six games, this time winning 62 64, to reach his first final for almost exactly one year. Fourth seeded Mexican player Cesar Ramirez faced him in the title match but Borvanov, despite his lower seeding, proved too good on the day and reeled off a 61 64 triumph to take the title. In Guadalajara, Borvanov also entered into the doubles event with Mexican partner Eduardo Peralta-Tello. Unseeded the pair reached the semifinals where they narrowly lost out to the No. 1 seeded team. Defeat meant that a 3-year wait for a career third ITF Pro Circuit doubles title would continue.
Staying in Mexico, Borvanov moved onto Durango where his next tournament of the month was being held. Here he was seeded seventh for the singles event. As with the previous tournament, Borvanov opened with a straight sets win over a Mexican Wild Card entrant, losing just four games in total. Scott Robertson, an Australian qualifier, was then defeated with the loss of five games a feat he then repeated in his quarterfinal match. The semifinal brought about a quick reunion with last week’s beaten finalist Cesar Ramirez, seeded third this week, and once more it was Borvanov who emerged from their encounter victorious. After going one year without reaching a final he was now contesting a second in successive weeks! In the final he was to take on the fourth seed Victor Romero from Mexico, who was also his doubles partner this week. In keeping with his performance all week so far he again triumphed in straight sets to claim his second title of 2010. Success also came in the doubles event, ending his long wait for a doubles title having last tasted victory in 2007. Unseeded the pair won each round in straight sets, a run of results that saw them defeat the top three seeds in consecutive rounds! This was also the first time in his career on the ITF Pro Circuit that Borvanov was victorious in both the singles and doubles finals of the same tournament.
Following on from his successful visit to Mexico, Borvanov had a week away from Pro Circuit competition before returning to play in the first tournament of the year to be held in the Dominican Republic. Taking place in the capital city of Santo Domingo, Borvanov found himself named the No. 6 seed in the singles event and, with a third change of partner this month in Russia’s Dmitri Sitak, seeded third in the doubles event. Borvanov got off to a perfect start, losing only the one game over the first two rounds. First Pakistan’s Jibran Mohammadi, a Lucky Loser, was defeated 61 60 and then Darian King, a Wild Card entrant from Barbados, went down 60 60. Uruguayan qualifier Ariel Behar was Borvanov’s next victim, defeated 63 61 as Borvanov progressed to the semifinal for the third time this month. With his confidence high following a winning run of thirteen matches with only one set lost, Borvanov was finally defeated. His 63 63 conqueror was the No. 2 seed from the Netherlands, Matwe Middelkoop, and the loss prevented him reaching a career first ITF Pro Circuit singles final outside of Mexico. Defeat also came at the semifinal stage in the doubles event where Borvanov and Sitak narrowly lost to the eventual tournament champions despite having taken the opening set.
Despite ending the month with defeat in the Dominican Republic, Borvanov will be pleased to have won his first titles of 2010 and in doing so end long trophy less periods in both singles and doubles. His successes in Mexico continue to ensure that the nation remains a lucky hunting ground for the 28-year old as all ten career singles finals contested on the ITF Pro Circuit have been in this Central American nation.