12:50 AM GMT August 24, 2019
On Friday, the dream became reality for 16 players at the US Open. As the qualifying competition concluded under cloudy skies, some booked their spots in the main draw for the first time, while others confirmed their return to the big show at Flushing Meadows.
Rain delayed the start of play by two hours, but that did not deter Jannik Sinner. At the ripe age of 18, the Italian made a statement in fighting through to the main draw. One day after he saved two match points, rallying from a break down in the third set against Viktor Galovic, he cruised past Mario Vilella Martinez to qualify.
The surging #NextGenATP star prevailed 7-6(1), 6-0 in just 72 minutes, carrying an impressive run of form to New York after capturing his second ATP Challenger Tour title in Lexington earlier this month. Having turned 18 just one week ago, he is the youngest player in the US Open main draw.
"It feels good," said Sinner. "I'm really happy to reach the main draw in the US Open. I've been trying to improve my game and make new experiences and I'm just really happy to make it through the qualies. Today I was playing much better than yesterday. I played my game and controlled the match."
Sinner opens against Stan Wawrinka, joining American Jenson Brooksby as teenage qualifiers. The 18-year-old Brooksby, a native of Sacramento, California, is the lone American to emerge from qualifying after ousting Pedro Martinez 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-3.