Young Players Preview Future at U.S. Open
by Marcia Frost, 7 September 2010
|Share: || || |
It wasn't just the top players in the world spectators got to see when they came to the first week of the main draw U.S. Open Championships. They also got a glimpse of the future of American tennis - and it was looking pretty bright.
Irina Falconi, who recently left Georgia Tech
after two years, and 18-year-old Ryan Harrison
made their way through the qualifying event
. For Falconi, it was a short visit to the main draw, as the 20 year old fell in the first round of women's singles to Italy's Flavia Penneta (6-2,6-1). It was quite a different story for Ryan, who picked up a nice paycheck with wins in three different events. In men's singles, the Texan upset Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia, with a four set victory in the first round. He narrowly missed taking it one further when he lost a fifth set tiebreaker to Sergiy Stakhovsky, after letting three match points slip by
Harrison kept his new fan base happy by sticking around a little longer, also making it to the second round of doubles with partner Robert Kendrick and mixed doubles with Melanie Oudin. In the latter match, the duo took a set off Grand Slam doubles champions Liezel Huber and Bob Bryan. For Ryan Harrison, the experience was satisfying, "I've always believed in myself and I've always believed that I could come in here and compete at this level," he said after his final singles match.
The experience for Bradley Klahn, who received a wildcard into the U.S. Open after winning the NCAA singles championship, was quite different. Klahn had actually prepared for his upcoming Grand Slam debut by practicing at the USTA's training center in Carson, California. At the time, he was thrilled to be able to hit with Sam Querrey, with whom he became fast friends. No one imagined that they would end up playing each other in the first round of the tournament.
The match was a lesson for Klahn in the fitness of a pro, as he later stated in the press conference, when Querrey was able to come back to take the last two sets after a second set loss. Instead of continuing with his lead and taking the third set, Bradley Klahn, who had never played a five set match before, began to cramp at that point - while Querrey was able to continue at the same level play. Klahn also repeated multiple times after the match that he is returning to Stanford for his junior year and has no intention of turning professional in the near future.