Cox and French prospect Halys set for exciting final

British No 7 Dan Cox will face French teenager Quentin Halys in the men’s singles final of the $15,000 Aegon GB Pro-Series tournament at The Shrewsbury Club tomorrow.

Cox, from Lincoln, insists he’s taken steps to ensure he does not put too much pressure on himself this year – and now he’s reaping the rewards.

Clearly enjoying his tennis, Cox, currently ranked 262 in the world, said: “I’ve tried not to put too much pressure on myself this year. I’ve tried to take each week as it comes and try and keep myself happy.

“At the end of last year I almost played too much and made myself a little bit miserable so I’m just taking each week as it comes, trying to keep myself happy and lively, and so far I’ve done that and it’s showed in my results.”

Cox, seeded three for this tournament, maintained the faultless form which has yet to see him drop a set at the Sundorne Road venue this week by brushing aside German Jan Choinski 6-1, 7-6 in the opening semi-final.

Unseeded Frenchman Halys, 18, was equally impressive in overcoming Italian Salvatore Caruso, the No 8 seed, in straight sets 6-1, 7-5.

It sets up an attractive final at 2pm tomorrow (Saturday) between two players who have never faced each other before. Admission is free with spectators able to enjoy the action from courtside stands.

Cox, 24, said he is pleased with his form as he looks to add another title to his collection.

“I’ll just go and play my game and I feel if I play the way I can that I can come out on top,” he said.

“I’ve actually got better by each match this week. At the start I actually wasn’t feeling the ball great at all. The second match it was better but I still needed to work on my rhythm a little bit.

“But that came back in the quarter final and then in the semi final I played very well and I feel like I’ve got my rhythm back again.”

Cox fell in the semi finals of the last tournament he played at The Wirral last week, but he’s determined to do better in Shrewsbury.

“I made the semis last week and I was a bit flat,” he added. “I want to do one better and I was really motivated to go one better than last week. Now I’m into the final, I want to win it.”

French prospect Halys is a man in form and won his last tournament at Poitiers in France last week, beating fellow countryman David Guez, a player ranked in the world’s top 200, in the final.

Halys started the year with a world ranking of 596 but has now climbed to 467, as high as he’s been so far.

Meanwhile, the all British doubles final which opened proceedings today saw Luke Bambridge and Scott Clayton, seeded three, get the better of top seeds Sean Thornley and Marcus Willis 7-6, 6-4 in an entertaining contest.

Pictured: British No 7 Dan Cox – all set for tomorrow’s Aegon GB Pro-Series final against French teenager Quentin Halys at The Shrewsbury Club. Picture by Richard Dawson.