Sandgren Gets Bounced in New York Open First Round
By Brent Shearer
(February 11, 2020) UNIONDALE, NEW YORK – Tennys Sandgren’s bittersweet season continued Monday night with a 7-6, 3-6, 6-7 loss to fellow American Stevie Johnson.
Fans will remember his seven match points missed match against Roger Federer in the Australian Open quarterfinals.
In his tightly fought first round match at the New York Open, Sandgren’s shining moment was a dramatic tweener in the third set, which gave him a break point. The shot became one of ESPN’s most frequently viewed highlights.
The bad news for the Tennessee native is that he didn’t convert the break point. But it’s one thing for an ATP pro to make or miss a tweener on an unimportant point. Sandgren pulled his off in a pressure situation that might have turned the tide against Johnson.
For his part, Johnson fought hard enough to prevail despite making a larger than average number of errors on his bread and butter groundstroke, the forehand. Except for the lapse that cost Sandgren the second set, he looked to be the stronger player. He out served Johnson and scored with a number of short angles, two of which were forehand service returns.
Johnson will play Italian veteran Andreas Seppi in the second round on Wednesday.
The positive takeaway for Sandgren is that his dodgy right knee seemed to hold up well and his court coverage was excellent. So, he can take away from the New York Open, the tweener of the year so far on tour and the belief that he has recovered physically from his marathon with Federer in the Australian Open.