It’s been a challenging year for Donald Young in more ways than one this 2013 season, but things are certainly looking up for the 24 year old American from Atlanta, Georgia this week at the U.S. Open. Young, who has put together three wins in qualifying over Matthew Barton (AUS), Marc Giquel (FRA), and Victor Estrella Burgos (DOM), finds himself into the main draw of a Grand Slam for the first time this year. In a qualifying draw littered with American hopefuls and wildcards, Young is the only American who managed to make it through all three rounds.
This is great news for the Solinco-sponsored Young who is currently #156 in the world as it will certainly help his ranking and momentum going forward into 2014. Tennis, more than any other sport, relies on confidence and momentum and what Young has been able to do here in New York already speaks volumes about the man’s character, ambition, and passion.
Most of Young’s losses this year have come in Challenger events. These events are smaller than your ATP 250s, 500s, and offer lower prize money as well as ranking points. So not only is his U.S. Open check going almost amount to what he’s earned all year, but the valuable rankings points garnered just from qualifying will kick in and get him in the right direction into the top 100 once again. It’s been a truly courageous year for Young as most players that fall out of the top 100 really struggle to find their way back in.
Young will be facing a lefty opponent, Slovakian Martin Klizan, in the first round of the main draw. It’s surely a great opportunity as Klizan will not be adjusted to the courts yet whereas Young has found comfort in fighting through three rounds already. Judging from the way Young was moving today, how physically fit he looks, and the sheer positive emotion he brings to the court nowadays, on top of home crowd support, he will have the edge on Klizan.