New York Open: The Intrigue of Korda vs Tiafoe and Harrison vs Young

By Scoop Malinowski

The New York Open could not have scheduled a more dynamically interesting opening night card double bill which will feature Sebastian Korda vs Frances Tiafoe and Ryan Harrison vs Donald Young tonight.

For a tennis enthusiast these are two fascinating clashes. Tiafoe is or was one of the leaders of the American #NEXTGEN brigade but in the last six months his poor results have diminished expectations. After showing such bright promise earlier in 2017 with heroic losing efforts versus Federer, Del Potro and Isner, Tiafoe has failed to get over the hurdle and is suffering bad losses to the likes of Matt Ebden.

Now to add to Tiafoe’s pressures, he has to face a new American teenager, three years younger than himself – Sebi Korda who has earned a wildcard into his first ATP event as a reward for winning the Australian Open junior boys title three weeks ago.

One year ago, Korda and Tiafoe both played the Sarasota Open Challenger in April. Korda received a wildcard, as he lives literally just a short walking distance from the venue of the event at El Conquistador in Bradenton, FL. Korda played the first round night match against Blaz Rola and though he put up an impressive effort, the then 16 year old was outgunned and beaten in straight sets by the former top 100 player.

Tiafoe ended up winning the Sarasota Open, defeating Tennys Sandgren in the final in two very impressive sets by Tiafoe.

But a lot can change in a matter of ten months in tennis. Now Tiafoe must deal with the pressure of subduing an explosive, confident teenager who certainly has the capability of causing an upset tonight at Nassau Coliseum. Korda has all the weapons, the movement, the serve, and the confidence of winning big matches. He also has his father, Petr Korda, the former ATP world no. 2, in his corner. Petr Korda has a genius tennis mind and it’s not a stretch to wonder if he will be able to figure out the winning formula for his son to knock off Tiafoe, who has only won one match this year against Stefan Kozlov in Dallas.

Ryan Harrison vs Donald Young is also an intriguing clash. Both are young Americans from different generations, Young is 28 and ranked 65, Harrison is 25 and ranked 44. Young of course, like any player with pride, abhors losing to a younger compatriot. The two have had several thrilling clashes, including last year in the Memphis Open semifinal, won of course by Harrison 64 64. They also played against each other last year in the French Open doubles final, again that match was won by Harrison and Michael Venus over Young and Santiago Gonzalez.

Harrison leads the overall head to head 5-2, since their first match in 2010 at Winnetka Challenger won by Young 63 62.

Adding to the intrigue is Harrison’s coach Michael Russell, also played six ATP matches vs Young and won five of them (not including six other Challenger and qualifying matches which were split at 3-3).

So tonight will be a terrific night of tennis at the inaugural opening night of the New York Open ATP tennis event at Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, NY and both matches will be televised by Tennis Channel.


  • catherine · February 19, 2018 at 1:41 am

    Well Scoop, half Poland seems to be living in the UK at the moment so we’re fully protected.

    And something maybe you ought to know – the current Mayor of London is Sadiq Khan, who is not white and won a huge majority in a largely white electorate. No perceived threat to us.

    EquineAnn – you’re absolutely right. But you’ll never convince Scoop.

    My question to myself is – do I let Scoop’s views, so unfortunately expressed here, stop me coming to this site and talking about tennis, or do I just stay away ?

    If I stay away no one would care anyway and I would miss discussing tennis which is the whole point of the site. So politics would win.

  • Jimmy the Gent · February 19, 2018 at 10:17 am

    scoop – you could be a jew as well LOL

    my advice to your negatve experiences with other jews is to learn and grow from it. no point griping and writing about it – really. it’s not gona change the world now or change the thousands of years of their history.

    so when in rome…or should we say – when in jerusalem..

  • Doug Day · February 19, 2018 at 3:42 pm


    So unfortunately expressed indeed: Linked above is your brightest social scientist grudgingly sharing his findings he discovered in the field on diversity.

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