Former World No.1 Gregory Gaultier has won the Expression Networks Enjoy Open this week to take home the first trophy of 2021, and also his third successive Challenger Tour title.
The Frenchman had previously won the other two tournaments sponsored by Expression Networks since the Tour restarted in September. He was victorious at both the Nolan and Liam’s Tournament and the Prague Open.
Gaultier was the top seed for the Challenger 10 level event and he came through the entire competition unscathed, winning all four of this matches in Bielsko-Biala, Poland, in straight games.
He came up against Egypt’s Mazen Gamal, the No.2 seed, in the final, with the World No.63 having come through to the last match of the event without having to face any of the top six seeded players in the tournament.
Gaultier, on the other hand, took out No.8 seed Viktor Byrtus and No.3 seed Robert Downer en route to the final, where he needed just 40 minutes to overcome the Egyptian Gamal, to win the 43rd title of his wonderful career.
Gaultier (right) and Gamal (left) in action in the final in Bielsko-Biala
One of the stories of the week came from the unseeded Marek Panacek, who made it all the way through to the semi-finals. The 18-year-old, who sits at World No.251 and is the Czech No.7, took out Dutch No.1 Roshan Bharos in the first round, before beating Germany’s Valentin Rapp in five games in the last eight.
Results: Expression Networks Enjoy Open
 Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt  Mazen Gamal (EGY) 3-0: 11-6, 11-6, 11-4 (40m)
 Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt  Robert Downer (ENG) 3-0: 11-4, 11-5, 11-4 (32m)
 Mazen Gamal (EGY) bt Marek Panacek (CZE) 3-0: 11-3, 11-5, 11-3 (28m)
 Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt  Viktor Byrtus (CZE) 3-0: 11-4, 11-5, 11-6 (28m)
 Robert Downer (ENG) bt  Ondrej Uherka (CZE) 3-2: 11-4, 4-11, 8-11, 11-6, 11-8 (60m)
Marek Panacek (CZE) bt  Valentin Rapp (GER) 3-2: 14-12, 7-11, 15-13, 10-12, 11-8 (75m)
 Mazen Gamal (EGY) bt  Jakub Solnicky (CZE) 3-1: 11-8, 11-9, 8-11, 11-6 (45m)
 Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt Heiko Schwarzer (GER) 3-0: 11-5, 11-9, 11-3 (20m)
 Viktor Byrtus (CZE) bt Tobias Weggen (GER) 3-0: 11-2, 11-3, 11-9 (24m)
 Ondrej Uherka (CZE) bt [WC] Daniel Poleshchuk (ISR) 3-0: 10-7 ret. (10m)
 Robert Downer (ENG) bt Filip Jarota (POL) 3-0: 11-8, 11-8, 11-7 (35m)
Marek Panacek (CZE) bt  Roshan Bharos (NED) 3-0: 11-5, 11-9, 11-8 (40m)
 Valentin Rapp (GER) bt David Zeman (CZE) 3-0: 11-7, 12-10, 11-6 (40m)
 Jakub Solnicky (CZE) bt Valeriy Fedoruk (UKR) 3-0: 14-12, 12-10, 11-5 (45m)
 Mazen Gamal (EGY) bt Julius Benthin (GER) 3-0: 11-6, 11-8, 12-10 (45m)