August 11 – 19, 2018
First time I visited the Open Tennis Stadtwerke Meerbusch. It’s close to Düsseldorf Airport in Germany and easily accessible from the highway. The event is held at a very cozy tennis club with good catering. The line-up was nice, with e.g. local heroes Rudolf Molleker and Dustin Brown. There were also plenty of new faces for me in action in qualifying.
I really enjoy to see guys battling in qualifying. While the level of play in these matches is considerably less consistent and more erratic than at ATP World Tour level, the passion of the players is the same. Everyone wants to win, because losing means no money earned and no points. In fact, the guys in qualifying often don’t have a coach and pay for their own racquet strings and accomodation.
The courts however were not in good shape. There was too much clay on most of them. Also the linesmen/ball kids and were not particularly well prepared, which is annoying for the players and slowed down the matches. In some cases they even damaged the court. Despite the many noisy airplanes flying right over the courts, which also distracted the players, I had two days of good fun at this ATP Challenger tournament.
Financial commitment: EUR 43.000