US OPEN 2014
Kokkinakis And Zverev Lead Young Gun Charge At US Open Qualifying
New York City, U.S.A.
by Josh Meiseles|
Top seed Jaziri, Russell, Kokkinakis and Zverev were among US Open Qualifying Day One winners
The Tunisian fired six aces and 41 winners, claiming 87 per cent of his first service points for the win in exactly two hours. He is seeking to qualify for his third US Open in four years. Jaziri will face former World No. 52 Marco Chiudinelli in the second round after the Swiss topped Sergei Bubka 6-2, 7-6(3).
Home favourite Michael Russell is looking to advance to his 10th main draw in Flushing Meadows since 1998, after defeating Enrique Lopez-Perez 6-1, 6-4. The 36 year old is coming off a strong week at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 stop in Toronto, reaching the second round and taking a set from World No. 5 David Ferrer.
"I had good crowd support," said Russell to ATPWorldTour.com following the match. "I'm pleased to get through. I've played here so many times and had some fantastic matches. I'm looking forward to playing on Thursday."
In other action, the young gun charge was led by 2013 US Open boys' finalist Thanasi Kokkinakis, who overcame Nikola Mektic 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, and 17-year-old bet-at-home Open semi-finalist Alexander Zverev. The German rising star won 83 per cent of first service points to oust Yasutaka Uchiyama 6-4, 6-4.
Also moving into the second round of qualifying was Taro Daniel, who saved a match point in defeat of Alex Kuznetsov 4-6, 7-6(7), 6-1. The Japanese broke serve on seven of eight opportunities. He is seeking to qualify for his first Grand Slam.
"On the match point I thought I got pretty lucky," said Daniel. "Then in the third set I think he was tired and disappointed about the second set. Winning a match like this definitely helps my confidence and hopefully it helps me play better in the next match."
The biggest upset of Day One belonged to Oscar Hernandez, who, at age 36, registered just the 10th hard-court match win of his career. The Spaniard, who returned to the professional circuit after retiring in 2011 due to complications from herniated disc surgery, stunned No. 2 seed Go Soeda 6-3, 6-3 in 70 minutes.
American Ernesto Escobedo toppled 24th-seed Somdev Devvarman 6-3, 6-2 as well, while Peter Polansky foiled Tennys Sandgren in his comeback debut following hip surgery in March. Polansky reached the second round as a qualifier in 2010, his best result in New York.