It was American Junior and #1 seed Donald Young who got the bulk of the press and hoopla in the 2005 U.S. Open Boy’s Juniors. It was unseeded Bahamian Ryan Sweeting (who holds dual citizenship with the Bahamas and the U.S.) who got to take home the winner’s trophy. From MSN:
It was the first hurdle that was the hardest for Ryan Sweeting.
“I was down five match points and pulled through the match and went on to win the title,” Sweeting said on Sunday. “I could have been out the first round, just like that.”
Instead, the 18-year-old from the Bahamas is the U.S. Open Junior Boys champion after pulling off yet another upset, defeating seventh-seeded Jeremy Chardy of France 6-4, 6-4.
“I didn’t even think I was capable of winning this tournament,” Sweeting said. “My goal coming in wasn’t to win. It was just to give 100 percent and play my best because that’s the only thing you can do.”
Ranked No. 17 by the International Tennis Federation, Sweeting was unseeded in the 64-player singles field. He started off by fighting off five match points and upsetting No. 12-seeded Carsten Ball of Australia, winning the third set in a tiebreak.
Then came victories over Andrea Arnaboldi of Italy; Holden Seguso of the United States; No. 3-seeded Leonard Mayer of Argentina and No. 6-seeded Sun-Yong Kim of South Korea before he took on Chardy.
“You want to win, obviously, but that’s not really something you can control,” the right-hander said. “The only thing you can control is playing your best, and that’s what I did.
“It worked this week, and I’m just so happy.”
Serving for the match, Sweeting jumped out to a 40-love lead.
“Then I made the mistake of thinking I was already there,” he said. “Then it got back to 40-30. I went to get my towel and started to calm down a little bit. Just said, ‘I have to do it here. I don’t want to get him back to deuce.
“I just bombed a serve and that was it. It was just a great feeling.”
Sweeting fell onto his back in relief, then got up and rushed to the stands to hug his coach, Nicolas Guizar, who flew to New York in time to see Sweeting play his semifinal match on Saturday. Then he ran to the other side of the court and embraced his mother.
He said the victory may cause him to change his plans for the future.
“It definitely puts a question mark on it,” he said. “It doesn’t necessarily change everything, but we’re definitely going to have to sit down and talk about it. I don’t think too many champions of the U.S. Open go on to college in a couple of months. But we’ll just see what happens.”