Tommy Paul plays in the qualifiers at the U.S. Open.
Tommy Paul plays in the qualifiers at the U.S. Open.|

U.S. Open qualifiers: Abrams previews the draw of those who seek the main draw, including Americans Tommy Paul, Donald Young, JJ Wolf, more

Matches start at 11 am EDT at Flushing Meadows. Admission is free.

Neal Abrams

Neal Abrams

2019 U.S. Open Men’s Qualifying Draw

Flushing Meadows, New York

Monday, August 19, 2019

The Men’s Qualifying draw for the 2019 U.S. Open is out, and the matches begin Monday, August 19, 2019. This year the powers that be have increased the Qualies from four to five days, and as always, entrance to these matches is free of charge. This tournament may not be the top 128 players in the world, but a lot of the 128 players who are in this draw are pretty close to the competitors who have made it directly into the main draw, and the level of play will be extremely high.

Petr Korda, a former Grand Slam men’s singles champion whose two daughters are professional golfers, has a 19-year-old son named Sebastian who is a 6’4” 2018 Australian Open Junior champion. Sebastian Korda is in this year’s U.S. Open qualies, on line 7. He opens his tournament with a first round match against Belgian Kimmer Coppejans. German Peter Gojowczyk (Gojo) who we’ve seen in lots of main draws this past Spring and Summer has drawn Mirza Basic, from Bosnia and Herzegovina. On lines 15 and 16, German Mischa Zverev, Sascha’s older brother who has had trouble winning matches in main draws this year, has drawn Uzbekistan’s Denis Istomin, who’s been around for a few years now, and plays a nice game of tennis. A bit lower on the drawsheet, on line 19, sits 2019 Kalamazoo runner-up Govind Nanda. As the National Jr. runner-up, Nanda got a direct entry into the U.S. Open qualies. He opens up against Germany’s Oscar Otte. On line 27 and 28 sit Japan’s Go Soeda and Spaniard Tommy Robredo. The two veterans will clash right away in a match that could remind fans of pre-9/11 days, as Robredo has been around that long. A former American Junior whiz kid, Stefan Kozlov, shows up on line 47. He’ll play Bulgaria’s Egor Gerasimov in Round One of the qualies, and the American’s hopes still depend on whether or not he’s fully healthy.

In the bottom half of the qualies, American Thai-Son Kwiatkowski opens up against Sweden’s Mikael Ymer, from lines 65 and 66. Tommy Paul, who really should have gotten a USTA-provided wild card into the main draw, instead is in the qualies, and appears on line 73, starting out against Germany’s Yannick Hanmann. Another American Junior champion, Jenson Brooksby, who won Kalamazoo’s 18 & under title in 2018, drew Japan’s Kaichi Uchida in the qualies. When Brooksby is done here, he’ll head on down to Texas Christian University to start his sophomore season there. Current Ohio State star J.J. Wolf shows up on line 91, where he’ll take on Italy’s Alessandro Giannessi, and right below those guys sits another former Kalamazoo Boy’s 18 & Under champion, Noah Rubin, who has drawn another Italian, this time Gianluca Mager, on lines 93 and 94. Japan’s popular Taro Daniel sits on line 105 and he’ll be taking on Spaniard Mario Vilella Martinez. Thirty-year-old American Donald Young, who won Kalamazoo twice in his Junior career, has been relegated to the qualies as his ranking just isn’t high enough to slide into the main draw. Unfortunately for Young, who has played the Open for many years now, the Atlanta native will open up against Taipei’s Jason Jung. Two other matches of note pit Sweden’s Elias Ymer against The Netherland’s Tallon Griekspoor, and Argentina’s Marco Trungelliti against Australian James Duckworth. Other known names scattered among the qualies are Nico Mahut, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, Norbert Gombos, Peter Polansky, Jannik Sinner and Mitchell Krueger.

Out of these and others who make the full 128 players in the qualifying draw, 16 will win three matches and move into the main draw as qualifiers. Still others will get lucky and be placed in the main tournament as lucky losers, when one or more of the main draw competitors withdraws due to illness or injury. The beauty of getting a spot in the main draw, of course, is that you get “real” money, and enough ranking points for these ‘border-line’ pros to be set up for a month or so of playing the elite.

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