By far the biggest surprise of the day at the Pekao Szczecin Open was Philipp Kohlschreiber losing in his first match. The German came back to the Challenger Tour searching for form and it doesn’t look like he’s found it yet.
Last week at the AON Open in Genoa, Kohlschreiber lost in the quarterfinals to Guido Andreozzi. Although definitely disappointing for him, getting three matches under his belt was clearly a positive.
The German came to the Pekao Szczecin Open as the third seed and one of the favorites to win the whole event. His first-round opponent, Ricardo Bonadio, has played some quality clay court matches this season (pushed Ramos-Vinolas to a deciding tie-break in Perugia), but he was never expected to present any danger. Due to a very busy schedule, the match was played on one of the outside courts.
Kohlschreiber came out with all guns firing. He capitalized on every short ball, blasting winners all over the place. Bonadio seemed tight while Kohlschreiber played freely and hit some ridiculous drop shot-lob combinations. The German took the first set six games to love in 29 minutes.
A fable-like turnaround
Bonadio finally got onto the scoreboard at the start of the second set. That loosened him up as he started hitting a bigger, deeper ball. Not fed short balls anymore, Kohlschreiber failed to adapt to his opponent’s better level of play.
Even when the Italian leveled, not one of the gathered tennis fans expected him to pull of this incredible upset. Kohlschreiber served bigger and hit bigger but grew increasingly frustrated with each miss. The German’s game was all over the place in the decider. Usually a very calm person, Kohlschreiber shouted angrily after wild misses and overhits. Bonadio hung in there tight and was finally finding some winners himself.
The German blew a 2-0 lead in the beginning and never got another look at the Italian’s serve. His mind was in shatters as a whole cannonade of errors came off his racket. Bonadio broke twice in the decider and never looked back, serving it out 0-6, 6-4, 6-3.
The Italian will now face fourteenth seed Constant Lestienne.
Main Photo from Getty.