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Italy's Riccardo Ghedin gets his Lexington Challenger campaign underway tonight against wildcard Eric Quigley.
Ghedin is a clay-court specialist so it will be interesting to see how he fares this week. He's ranked 329 with a career best ranking of 223 but he'd much rather be competing on clay in Europe or South America than hard courts in the States. He lost in the first round of Granby last week and he's looked a little out of his depth all year in the challengers, winning a futures event in Turkey back in February but unable to continue the success at the next level.
Quigley has just a single ATP ranking point to his name (he's ranked 1724) but Ghedin should be warned, he's quite a bit better than that. The 23 year old has spent the past few years at the University of Kentucky where he's been a bit of a college star, ranked in the NCAA top ten for both singles and doubles.
Quigley is one of the many American players who feel they are much more prepared for the professional tour having spent 3-4 years in the college ranks. "If a junior is contemplating a professional tennis career. I think they should give college tennis a try," he says. "I have grown so much from the college experience and camaraderie that being on a team can give."
Given Ghedin's recent struggles do not be surprised if Quigley pushes him all the way.