As we move to Week 2 of the US Open Tennis Tournament, one thing is clear. The American Men are making an impact this year.
With 16 players remaining in the Men's Bracket, there are 4 Americans left. They are a mix of veterans and up and coming players.
It has been a pleasure to watch Andy Roddick play as if there were no pressure on him. On the court, he has looked relaxed, poised and appears to be having fun (A slightly different story in the Press Room, but I digress). He entered the tournament with his lowest seed in memory and has displayed a nothing to lose type attitude. Things get a bit tougher from here as he faces 5th seed David Ferrer next and a possible match up against Rafael Nadal could be around the corner.
The highest seeded American left is 8th seed Mardy Fish. Fish is playing some of the best tennis of his career at age 29. He is seasoned and has been through the battles before. With a big match today against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the 11th seed, a win would likely pair him against multiple Champion Roger Federer.
One of the big surprises of the tournament has been the play of Donald Young. He was labeled the next great American years ago as a teen. Now at 22, it appears he is finally having a breakout tournament. Young's confidence is at an all time high and has showed poise in situations where he may have melted down in years past. He has a huge task ahead when he will face 4th seed Andy Murray, who must feel the pressure to win his first Major. It will take a great match by Young but he has a real chance to make this match very interesting.
John Isner is playing very solid tennis, probably the best of his career. After his record setting match at Wimbledon in 2010, many only associate him as a participant inf the longest match in tennis history and forget that even though he is 26, is one of the real up and coming Americans. With his opposing size and monster serve, he has potential to advance. His next match is against 12th seed Gilles Simon of France in what should be a very entertaining match. If Isner serves well, he is tough to beat.
The last American to win the U.S. Open was Andy Roddick in 2003. Gone are the likes of Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi who dominated the 1990s. The United States has gone close to a decade without a dominant player on the Men's side. It remains to be seen if a Donald Young or Ryan Harrison will become one of those players but right now, the USA would just settle for another Major Champion.