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Donald Young Secures Slot In AO Main Draw *fist pump*

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Black Tennis Pros's Donald Young Secures AO Main Draw Slot

American Donald Young has secured a berth in the main draw of Australian Open 2010, surviving intense pressure from Japanese veteran Takao Suzuki to win 7-6(0) 7-6(2) on Saturday.

Suzuki’s tactics, where he followed his slice backhand to the net at every opportunity, immediately had Young on the back foot, and saw him broken to love in the first game of the match.

“I was pretty nervous at the start,” said Young. “I wasn’t putting any balls in play, I was very tentative, (and) my arms weren’t moving. But that’s normal; if you’re not nervous, you’re not human.”

Suzuki, the world No. 282, failed to take advantage of his opportunities over his higher-ranked opponent. His touch shots weren’t firing, with drop shots and drop volleys floating into the net or being pushed wide of the mark.

Young gradually loosened up, but faced Suzuki serving for the first set at 5-4. Young’s return of serve continued to impress, and after chasing down another Suzuki drop shot, he leveled the set at 5-5.

On Suzuki’s relentless attacking, Young said, “That’s his game; it’s tough to play someone when they’re putting so much pressure on you all the time.”

Suzuki’s fans cheered him on, with the Japanese breaking Young and earning another chance to serve the set out at 6-5.

With the set hanging in the balance, Young hustled as he has done in his previous two qualifying matches, and put Suzuki’s backhand under the pump to break back and force a tie-break. Disappointed at his failure to seize his chances, Suzuki capitulated in the tiebreaker, failing to win a point.

The second set was as tight as the first, but Young continued to trouble Suzuki at the net with his dipping ground strokes. Both had chances to edge ahead, with Young surviving a break point in the sixth game.

In the second set tie-breaker, Suzuki dragged several volleys into the net before Young set up match point with a sizzling passing shot, repeating the dose to advance to the main draw.

Posted by Shelia

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