Richard Gasquet, the thirteenth seed, would have been forgiven for thinking he had an easy trip to the second round when the draw came out.
Drawing the British number three Kyle Edmund, the Frenchman was the favourite for this match. The Brit is ranked around 70 places lower than Gasquet. The thirteenth seed should have been walking off the court a winner in this match.
Gasquet, however, lost in straight sets to a much lower ranked opponent in Winston-Salem. John Millman surprised the Frenchman and the Australian took the win in straight sets. So maybe he shuouldn’t have overlooked any potential opponent in New York City.
Edmund came out flying, breaking early in the first two sets. Painting the lines, everything the Brit tried was working. Hitting powerful forehands more or less at will–which Gasquet was unable to respond to, Edmund soon took control for the first set .
Gasquet tried to fight back, only to find the Brit was having none of it. Pushing hard, Edmund broke again in the second set. The Frenchman was staring down the barrel of a two sets to love deficit.
The thirteenth seed had recovered from two sets to love down before in his career. However, none of these had been recently. Gasquet made a great start to the third set, breaking the Brit for the first time in the match to take the lead.
The comeback looked like it could have started; after all, Edmund is still inexperienced in the best of five sets, and also had never won a main draw match in New York before as this was the young Brit’s main draw debut. In 2016 the Brit had only won one main draw grand slam match, so the record was not good.
Also, Edmund had a two set lead over David Goffin in the 2015 Davis Cup final in Ghent before the Belgian came back to take the win.
With the Frenchman on the up in the third set, it looked as though this could happen again. However, Edmund dug deep and battled hard after being broken at 2-3. The Brit stepped up the pressure and broke straight back. Taking the next four games Edmund progressed into the second round without Gasquet getting a look in.
The thirteenth seed lost 2-6, 2-6, 3-6 to bring his Open challenge for 2016 to an abrupt end.