Shabaz Falls in US Open Doubles First Round
FLUSHING MEADOWS, N.Y. – Virginia junior tennis player Michael Shabaz (Fairfax, Va.) made his debut at the US Open Wednesday on the third day of play at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Shabaz and partner Wayne Odesnik fell in the first round of doubles to John Isner and Sam Querrey 6-3, 6-4.
“It was definitely a little nerve wracking,” said Shabaz of his first US Open main draw experience. “We had a good crowd on our court and it took a little while to adjust to being in that spotlight. I haven’t played here since 2005 (in the juniors), but playing in a Grand Slam is a lot different than any other tournament or college match you play.”
Shabaz, the NCAA Doubles Champion last season with Dominic Inglot, received a wild card to play in the Open with Odesnik, the No. 86 ranked player in the world. The duo was broken once in each set and couldn’t take advantage of two break point chances against the big-serving rising American stars.
“All four of us know each other well and grew up playing against each other in the juniors,” said Shabaz. “To be on the court with three guys ranked in the top 100 in the world was a great learning experience for me. Today, John and Sam showed why they are top 60 players.”
Shabaz became the first active Cavalier player to ever appear in the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament. He also became the first player from UVa (active or former) to play in the US Open doubles main draw since Geoff Macdonald in 1982.
Former Cavalier Somdev Devvarman, who made his Grand Slam singles main draw debut Monday with a straight set win over Frederico Gil of Portugal will return to action on Thursday as he meets No. 23 seed Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany in the second round. That match is the fourth and final match scheduled for Court 4.