Dangerous and rising temperatures forced Day 5 at the Old Capitol Tennis Championships to begin play on the Hawkeye Tennis & Recreation Complex’s indoor courts. In the day’s first match, No. 5 seed, Aziz Dougaz (pictured, file photo) won against Hady Habib, 6-4, 6-2. The straight set victory ended Habib’s impressive run to the quarterfinals.
In the tournament’s other first match of Day 5, seeded Americans John McNally and Evan Zhu faced off in what proved to be the most competitive singles match of the day. After squandering an early lead, McNally earned a service break late in the third set to clinch the match.
The third match to conclude featured qualifier, Errol Smith, against the No. 6 seed, Axel Geller. Smith’s storybook run appeared destined to continue after capturing the first set 6-2. However, Geller stormed back to take the match 2-6, 6-3, 6-0.
In Friday’s final quarterfinal singles match, the tournament’s highest remaining singles seed, Alex Rybakov, earned a routine straight set victory over qualifier Preston Touliatos. While Thursday’s results featured a day of shocking upsets, Rybakov’s win guaranteed that all higher seeded players advanced to the Saturday’s semifinal round.
In doubles action, the No. 1 seeded team of Lloyd Glasspool and Alejandro Gonzalez advanced with victory over No. 4 seeds, Alfredo Perez and Evan Zhu. The doubles victory secured the second finals appearance in as many years in Iowa City for Glasspool as he was the inaugural singles champion in 2018. In the final match of the day, Brits Mark Whitehouse and Jack Findel-Hawkins easily advanced, 6-2, 6-2, against Americans Alexander Rybakov and Sekou Bangoura.