Parker wins first set but then falters

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STUART Parker suffered his second successive ATP Challenger event elimination at the hands of China’s Juncheng Chang.

The Jerseyman was a wildcard entry at the Ilkley Trophy in West Yorkshire and won the first set 7-6 against the tournament’s sixth seed in the first qualifying round.

However, Chang, who at 162 is ranked 265 places higher than Parker in the world rankings, hit back and took the next two sets 6-3, 6-4 to win in a time of 2hrs 18mins.

Parker hit 16 aces in the match but ultimately paid the price for not taking his chances on break point, while Chang took his.

It was all too familiar for Parker, having lost a second-round qualifier to the 18-year-old 6-7, 6-1, 6-7 at the Rothesay Open in Nottingham in similar style last week.

Parker, 25, who will be Jersey’s flag bearer at the Island Games in Guernsey next month, has had a frustrating season, despite getting more exposure on the Challenger Tour, having suffered a number of early exits this year. His best performance was a quarter-final appearance at the M25 Jablonec nad Nisou in the Czech Republic at the beginning of the month. Parker has slipped down the rankings to 427 in the world, but is still hopeful of receiving a wildcard entry for the Wimbledon qualifying tournament later this month.

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