(Match report by Robert Valdovinos)
Kiwi World No. 80 Martin Knight surged past Belgian World No. 109 to capture the title of the 2016 Rochester Pro-Am. This was the first time that players from New Zealand and Belgium were represented in the final. Jan van der Herrewegen found success throughout the tournament by dictating the pace of the games, but today he could not help but watch as Martin Knight took control of the match.
In the first, Martin and Jan used similar tactics, using a combination of length and consistent attacking to win long points. The longest rally in the first came at 5-2, as Martin took at 6-2 lead with a tin by Jan.
Martin capped the first game, with a no-look shot to the opposite side of the court. In the second, it appeared as though Jan’s lengthy matches throughout the week had tired his legs. Martin used this to his advantage and frequently took him to the back of the court with a consistent barrage of lob shots. Martin took the second with a score of 11-5.
Coming into the third, the split crowd cheered both athletes and encouraged them to give it their best in what could potentially be the last game of the tournament. In the third, Jan found himself again on the defensive, but managed to keep pace during the early part of the game.
With full confidence and a relaxed style of play, Martin Knight sealed his first Rochester Pro-Am Championship with a decisive 11-5 score. He joins an illustrious roster of past Rochester ProAm champions and we look forward to watching these guys soar up the rankings in the months and years to come.