What an amazing day of tennis at the Racquet Club of the South today! I was not able to see the ladies play, but I was able to go around the club and see all four of the men’s matches. Rhyne Williams really brought his A game but to be honest I really wasn’t expecting anything less from him. He is fresh off his win from the Intercollegiate Championships in N.Y. and honestly when I saw him in person, I was a little taken aback. He’s very tall and very quick on his feet. He is going places for sure and is someone to keep your eye on. Williams beat the second seed Tim Smyczek 6-4, 6-0. Wow!
Williams with Coach Chris Woodruff after his win. (photo courtesy of Volstennis twitter)
The match that I saw the least of was Denis Kudla and Jordan Cox, but I sat and watched them play table tennis in the players lounge after their match. Such unpretentious guys and very eager to answer any questions that I put to them. Cox is now living in Florida at Bollettieri’s Academy and Kudla is training in Boca right now, but still calls his home Northern Virginia and loves it here. Kudla will next play Jack Sock in the semifinals.
Speaking of Sock, Jack was on fire today. He was up 4-0 in the first set and then hurt his hip somehow and I could tell it caused him some discomfort. Young came back after that, and the match ended up going three sets. Young lost the match with a double fault and then smashed his racquet into the ground not once, not twice, but three times to really make certain it was broken. What was so inspiring to me during that match was Sock’s passion. The fist pumping, the C’mon’s! I absolutely loved it and it was so much fun to watch. What a cute, cute kid he is, and boy does he really have some talent. America should be so proud to call him our own.
The final of the four matches was the Ryan Harrison and Michael Shabaz battle. Those two went head to head and Harrison had match point in the second set, but Shabaz refused to surrender and killed the ball to take it to a tiebreak. It was such a fun match to watch. Harrison is as passionate as Sock but probably has a little more arrogance about him than Jack. It was good though… all good. Harrison is very sure of himself and that confidence is going to take him far, no doubt.
So, the semi’s start tomorrow at 1 p.m. EST on Sat. I am so excited to see these matches so stay tuned for more fun and awesomeness to come!