Witten Has His Eye On US Open Main Draw

Notice: Undefined variable: page_title in /home/tennisne/public_html/wp-content/themes/dante-child/single.php on line 205

Copyright © 2015. No duplication is permitted without permission from Bob Larson Tennis.

Naples, Florida’s Jesse Witten will take on Australia’s John-Patrick Smith in the first round of US Open qualifying today, six years after the most successful major of his career in New York.

Back then the former Lely High School star and University of Kentucky All-American reached the third round before losing to current world no.1 Novak Djokovic. He previously beat 29th seed Igor Andreev of Russia and Máximo González.

Now, aged 32 years old and predominantly a coach in his home town, he successfully progressed through the US Open National Playoff to win the singles title in New Haven, Connecticut.

The prize was a place in qualifying Witten enthused: “Nobody thought I’d be here. I didn’t think I’d be here. I’m just going to enjoy it. It’ll probably be the last time I’m here, and I’m going to share it with some of the people from when I made my run here.

“I’ve been back to the Open watching and coaching. I never thought I’d have another crack at playing. It’s fun. It’s a great opportunity.”

However as soon as he finishes at Flushing Meadows, Witten intends to drive back to New Haven to play in the doubles quarterfinals. “It’s going to be a lot of moving parts,” he agreed.

Witten never got higher than a career high ranking of world no.163 in January, 2010 but has never formally retired as a player and has continued to be involved with World TeamTennis and playing the odd Futures event.

“All summer I was playing pretty well,” said Witten who won all four of his matches in the Playoffs in straight sets, capped by a 7-6, 7-6 victory over Matija Pecotic of Croatia in the final.

“I was still coaching with the kids and working with them at home. The last few weeks since then, I wasn’t feeling too good, and I wasn’t playing too well.”

Copyright © 2015. No duplication is permitted without permission from Bob Larson Tennis.