Edmund stuns Gasquet in US Open Round 1

By Jake Davies

  • Kyle Edmund defeats Richard Gasquet [13] 6-2 6-2 6-3
  • Next up for Edmund is Ernesto Escobedo in the second Round of the US Open
NEW YORK, USA – Kyle Edmund produced one of the shocks of the first day, ousting 13th seed Richard Gasquet in the opener, and the US Open.

 

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Kyle Edmund defeats Richard Gasquet [13] 6-2 6-2 6-3

In one of the surprises of the tournament, 84th ranked Edmund upset a former US Open semi-finalist Gasquet in the first round of the US Open. Many have talked about the improvements and strides that Edmund has made to his game and it all came into fruition in a near-perfect display from the Brit on Day 1 at Flushing Meadows.

Edmund was having things his own way on Court Five, as he dictated play time after time with his dominant forehand. Gasquet struggled to impose himself on Edmund, with the Brit making the Frenchman do all the running for large periods of the match.

From early on in the match it became apparent that Gasquet was not feeling at his best. Edmund seemed up for the battle in the 32c heat, as he sought after one of the biggest wins of his young career to date.

As much as Edmund has improved, he has been a long way from achieving a big scalp like a win over Gasquet at a Grand Slam. The manner of such a victory shows the improvement in application to the task at hand, especially as he held a two sets lead over the Frenchman.

In the third set, it looked like Gasquet had finally gained some momentum. Edmund would eventually go on to break back immediately before closing out an impressive straight sets win over Gasquet.

One of many positive signs to Edmund’s game was the variation of weaponry he demonstrated on the forehand. Everyone already recognises how domineering his forehand is, but to have the capability to hurt an opponent in different ways is important at this level in professional tennis. Not only did Edmund hit his usual flat forehand, but he incorporated lots of spin and varied the height of the ball in order to stop Gasquet from finding a rhythm.

Kyle Edmund vs Ernesto Escobedo Round 2

Edmund’s second round opponent is America’s Escobedo, who is making noise at Grand Slam level at the age of 20. It has been a year of firsts for Escobedo, who won his first Challenger title at Lexington, which granted him a wild card at the US Open. Escobedo also gained his first ATP win by beating a Top 100 player in Diego Schwartzman.

Escobedo has an expansive game, which has it’s upside, but the 20-year-old has certain limitations to the big game of his. The sustainability of Escobedo’s game is something that has been talked about during his development to the higher echelons of the Men’s game. The major question is whether Escobedo’s strengths can guide him through consecutive Best of 5 matches, which are as alien to the American as they were to Edmund not long ago.

Escobedo also hits deep, heavy groundstrokes from both sides and always looks to take time away from his opponent by stepping inside the baseline. In addition to this, the American also has a deceptively good serve that can generate him many cheap points at times.

It will be a very different opponent for Edmund, but now the Brit has to deal with the fact that he is the favourite for this particular match. If Edmund wins this challenge, he will progress to the third round of a Grand Slam for the first time.

 

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