Rubin Falls to 2010 NCAA Champ in Third-Set Tiebreak
Aug. 17, 2014
By Jay Garneau, Wake Forest Athletic Communications (@WakeMTennis)
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Playing in the main draw of the Winston-Salem Open, incoming men's tennis freshman Noah Rubin fell to 2010 NCAA singles champion Bradley Klahn in a three-set thriller.
Playing on center court, Rubin recovered from a slow start to dominate the second set before eventually falling in a third-set tiebreak in his ATP debut, 2-6, 6-0, 6-7 (5).
Leading 4-2, Klahn was able to put away the last two games to take the opening set over Rubin.
But Rubin responded in a big way, feeding off his new home-stadium crowd as he swept the second set.
The third set was more back-and-forth. Each player held serve as the set started out 1-1. Klahn then held serve twice and also broke once to take a 4-1 advantage, before Rubin won four straight games to take a 5-4 lead.
Each player then faced and answered a must-win scenario. First, Klahn, the current No. 116-ranked player on the ATP World Tour, took back-to-back games to move ahead, 6-5.
Rubin held serve to force a tiebreak, in which Klahn jumped ahead and stayed ahead to clinch the match.
"It was a great atmosphere. [This is my] second home now, so it's a good experience to be out there playing one of the top guys in the world," Rubin said. "[I proved] that I can play with these players. If nobody knew that today, I think I proved it to them...There's definitely room for improvement and to keep working hard."
Klahn advances to take on top-seeded and two-time Open champion John Isner in the next round.
Rubin will continue a busy summer in which he has already won Wimbledon juniors and the USTA Boys National Championship. Next, he'll compete against the world's top-ranked player, Novak Djokovic, in an exhibition on Aug. 21 at the Johnny Mac Tennis Project in a benefit match. The following week, Rubin will compete in the main draw of the US Open in both singles and doubles play after earning wild cards.