Weakened by chills and fever, last year’s semi-finalist Oscar Otte was unable to repeat his successful performance from 2022 at the tennis tournament in Stuttgart.

At the start of the grass season, the man from Cologne had to face the French world number 58. Gregoire Barrere 4:6, 3:6 and was eliminated in the first round. For Otte, his result crisis continued with the fourth first-round exit. He also failed at the French Open in Paris.

“In any case, extremely annoying again. I’ve planned so much,” said Otte. However, after the defeat in doubles on Monday, he was in bed and only decided to play singles after consulting the doctor. “He said when the fever is down and the body aches are gone, then I can try it,” reported Otte: “It was a little better this morning, but a few percent were missing.”

Missed many chances

Last year, Otte proved that he likes the fast game on grass when he reached the semi-finals in Stuttgart and then in Halle in Westphalia. However, the Cologne native was not able to put the solid playing Barrere under pressure in the first set when he was serving. The German Davis Cup player, on the other hand, made a double mistake and lost the decisive serve to make it 4:5.

In the second section, the 29-year-old Otte did not use five chances to take the serve from his opponent of the same age. Immediately afterwards he conceded another break to make it 3:4 and then didn’t win any more games.

Otte did not know whether his illness would jeopardize his start in Halle next week. “I’m going home now and have to recover. I’m trying everything so that I’m at least 95 percent again for Halle.” Also due to a knee injury, he is currently only ranked 141 in the world and thanks to a wild card he made it into the Stuttgart main draw.