With all the talk about the young American women in this year's US Open, like Christina McHale, Irina Falconi, and Sloane Stephens, not many fans have paid attention to two young American men who won thier respective first round matches and both have a good chance to upset two higher-ranked players on Friday. 22 year-old Donald Young was a highly respected prospect when he was 17 and 18, but nothing really came out of it until this summer, when he reached his first-ever semifinal at the Legg Mason Classic in Washington. Although he reached the third round of the US Open back in 2007, his story is again being talked about as he convincingly won his first round match and is set to take on Swiss veteran Stan Wawrinka in the second round. Young will definitely have a chance to pull out the upset, as the crowd will definitely be behind him and he has shown his vast potential this summer. He will have to get out to a quick start and dictate the majority of the rallies if he has a chance to make this match interesting, which I think he will.
Other than Donald Young, there is another young American who has burst onto the scene in a big way at the 2011 US Open. 18 year-old Jack Sock from Nebraska won the biggest match of his young career in the first round against wily veteran Marc Gicquel. With his first Major victory under his belt, the young Sock can now focus on his next task, which will be a primetime match on Arthur Ashe Stadium against 2003 US Open Champion Andy Roddick. Not a big deal, right? Not exactly. While Sock will almost definitely be intimidated by the enormity of the situation tomorrow night at first, he should be able to settle down and play his game. Roddick, who looked less than solid in his first round win against Michael Russell, has not been even close to his best this summer, which will be welcome news to the 18 year-old. Expect Sock to come out firing and really feed off the crowd, which will surely get behind the large underdog.
So, while the majority of the attention of American tennis fans is being focused on young up-and-comers like Christina McHale and Irina Falconi, watch out for Donald Young and Jack Sock to make some noise on Friday at the 2011 US Open. As they always say, anything can happen.