New York (dpa) - Dominik Koepfer reached the third round at the US Open of the tennis pros.
The 25-year-old, who only came into the peloton on qualifying, prevailed against American Reilly Opelka 6: 4, 6: 4, 7: 6 (7: 2) and was the first German to survive in New York Round. Koepfer is in his second Grand Slam tournament for the first time in the third round.
At Louis Armstrong Stadium he converted his first match ball after 2:28 hours. In the fight for the knockout round of the Black Forest meets now the winner of the duel between the American Jenson Brooksby and Nikolos Bassilaschwili from Georgia.
"It feels great," said Koepfer after the biggest success of his career so far. "I really enjoyed playing here." Koepfer's second appearance in Flushing Meadows had been moved to the second largest arena at short notice, as the match between Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrow and Croatian Borna Coric, originally scheduled for the night session, suffered a back injury Coric failed.
All of a sudden Koepfer, the tennis fanatic in Germany, has only found its way into the limelight since its Wimbledon participation less than two months ago. But that only spurred on the former college player. Against Opelka, after all number 42 in the world, Koepfer appeared completely unconcerned and totally focused from the beginning. For 5: 4 he made the break in the first set and took after 53 minutes the first round.
Also in the second section Koepfer determined the events. For 3: 2 he made a break again, shortly thereafter Opelka was treated for a few minutes on the back. The 2.11-meter giant moved bad, was often miserable to the ball. Koepfer took advantage of the skillfully and also took the second set 6: 4.
Thereafter, the German made a small period of weakness and gave at the beginning of the third round for the first time even from his service. But Koepfer quickly recovered and made it to 2: 3 the rebreak. Nevertheless, he had to survive some tight phases and had to fend off a total of four set balls before he made the surprise perfect.