Pune's Sumit Nagal was exuberant after he found out that he would face tennis legend Roger Federer in his maiden Grand Slam appearance at this year's US Open. The Indian ace pulled off a brilliant comeback to defeat Joao Menezes of Brazil by 5-7, 6-4, 6-3 margin in the final qualifying round.
Sumit Nagal is living a dream right now after being drawn against tennis legend - Roger Federer - in the opening round of his maiden Grand Slam appearance. The 22-year old will take on the 20-time Grand Slam winner after Prajnesh Gunneswaran also secured a spot at the US Open.
Nagal, who is the sixth Indian player to win a junior Grand Slam title, added that he is looking forward to facing the Swiss great after securing a berth in the first round last Friday.
"It's what I wanted when the draw was out. It's an amazing experience playing a player like him who has done so much in tennis. I am looking forward to this, it's going to be fun," Nagal told TOI in a recent interview.
The Haryana-born player is also only the sixth Indian to appear at a Grand Slam after Prakash Amritraj, Somdev Devvarman, Yuki Bhambri, Saketh Myneni, and Prajnesh Gunneswaran. Nagal, who was crowned 2015 Wimbledon boys' champion, beat Japan's Tatsumo Ito 7-6 (6), 6-2 in the opening round before overcoming Menezes who is ranked 210. Nagal won the next nine games and 11 of the last 14 games.
"I played well in qualifiers. Every match meant something, I had some history with all of them.
"Ito destroyed me and I felt really bad as I couldn't perform at all. So when I saw I am playing him again, I was happy that I have a chance for revenge," Nagal added.