Atlanta-local Donald Young said he needed to keep his focus as he came from a set-down overnight to beat Ivo Karlovic 2-6, 7-6, 7-6 at the BB&T Atlanta Open.
The Chicago-born left hander celebrated his 29th birthday yesterday when he started his match with Karlovic, but trailed 2-6, 5-5 after a weather delay ended play early.
Young managed to set up and win a second set tiebreaker, before recovering from 4-2 down in the third set to set up a clash with number four seed Matthew Ebden.
“Yesterday was my birthday, but today kind of was the gift,” Young said.
“The opportunity came, and I picked the right spot on a break point and hit a good shot.
“There we were, even again, I knew once that when we went to a break, that I had won the last three (tiebreakers), so I was feeling pretty confident.”
“It’s nice to win in Atlanta at home. Home had been a troubled spot for me, but it was great to get a wildcard here, and I am ready to go.”
Meanwhile British number three Cameron Norrie took just over an hour to advance to the second round after a 7-5, 6-0 win over Malek Jaziri.
Norrie, 22, set up a clash with Jeremy Chardy after the Frenchman defeated Lithuania’s Ricardas Berankis 6-4, 6-3.
Elsewhere, there were defeats for three Australians as 2006 Australian open finalist Marcos Baghdatis cruised past Alex Bolt, while Thanasi Kokkanakis and James Duckworth bowed out to American opponents Noah Rubin and Ryan Harrison.
There was also wins for Francis Tiafoe, Mikhail Youzhny and Alexander Zverev.