USTA Tennis Open 2013 ranking
AUSTRALIAN OPEN 2013
Player Q&A© Matthew PaceRhyne Williams will make his first trip to Australia.
With hard work comes great success.
Rhyne Williams supports this old adage. Shortly after departing the collegiate tennis scene in July 2011, the Knoxville, Tenn. native tipped the scale at over 200 pounds. If he wanted to earn a living as a professional tennis player, Williams knew something had to give.
In reshaping his off-court habits over the course of the 2012 season, Williams jumped more than 300 spots to his current career-high ranking of World No. 190. His improved fitness made its mark this past Sunday, after he emerged victorious at the USTA Australian Open Wild card Play-offs in Norcross, Ga.
A former All-American at the University of Tennessee, the third-seeded Williams overcame No. 1 seed Tim Smyczek 7-6(4), 5-7, 6-3, 6-3 to prevail in the final. Williams also defeated second seed Denis Kudla and Daniel Kosakowski in the eight-player event hosted by the Life Time Athletic & Tennis at Peachtree Corners.
In securing the Melbourne wild card, Williams will avoid the testing qualifying rounds. His countryman James Blake and Jack Sock are among the players who will battle it out for a place in the main draw.
ATPWorldTour.com caught up with 21-year-old Williams, discussing his performance in Georgia, tennis background, 2012 rankings rise and more in this Q&A feature…
It was interesting because it was an indoor event and everyone has been training outside. So it was a little different to go back indoors. I felt pretty comfortable on it and I moved well. I’ve been working extremely hard in the off-season, especially on movement. I think it’s already started to pay off.
It was pretty tough to play three matches in three days with no days off. I had a very physical second-round match with Denis Kudla. It was about three hours long and I had to come back the next day and play another tough opponent, Tim Smyczek, in a best-of-five set match. I haven’t done that very often, so it was new for me. It was a great tournament and I played really well.
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