Tournament wild card first up on day one
We caught up with wild card, Jack Sock, on the eve of the Heineken Open to see how 2013 went, and what it's like being an up-and-coming American talent.
What do you help to achieve this year?
I am just trying to get better – mentally and physically. Always keep progressing and improving, obviously would like the ranking to go up as well. I don’t do a lot of numbers but hoping to be well ahead of where I am now.
Are you anxious to get up high in the rankings or happy to take your time?
I want to get up there as soon as possible, and stay there. There’s definitely a trend now, a lot of the older guys in tennis are doing well – the average age at the top of the age is a little older. I think if I keep working hard, keep doing what I’m doing, keep improving all the time, I think I can move my way up – and be up there hopefully sooner rather than later.
Do you have support from the likes of Isner and those guys?
There’s always a little knowledge they try and give you. Most of the Americans are pretty good friends, we all get along well. I’m good friends with John, we stay in touch.
It’s been a long time since an American won a Grand Slam title, how conscious of that are you?
It’s a hot topic, a lot of people like to talk about it. It is what it is, like all Americans, we’re doing what we can, trying to get better. In the younger generation, around my age, there’s a lot of us making strides, and pushing each other, working off each other to hopefully bring American tennis back to what it was. Everyone’s looking for that next one – here’s hoping it will be me!
You’ve already won a Grand Slam in the mixed doubles – tell us about that?
It’s pretty cool! It was a very surreal moment for me. I was 18 when it happened so it was pretty unexpected – definitely an unreal feeling.
What experience did you take from your Grand Slam win?
There’s always stuff to gain when you’re playing at the end of a Slam, no matter what event it’s in. People are watching, there’s always pressure. In bigger matches, you always learn a lot.
Where’s your favourite place to play?
For some reason always in New York, I play my best. Home country Slam, the ball always feels good there. Both of my third rounds in the last two years were there, and they’ve been a couple of my favourite matches of my career. The feeling you get there, is like nothing you’ve ever experienced.