Australian Open Cinderella story and VFL Tennys Sandgren is rolling his way through the competition. He first gained fame from his upset of world No. 8 Stan Wawrinka in the round of 64 and is making headlines again for a win over fifth-seeded Dominic Thiem this morning.
And how about Tennessee Vol Tennys Sandgren?! Melbourne is a looong way from Rocky Top, but the 26 y-o achieved an improbable dream here to reach QF. So chilled & crafty on court. 👏🏻👏🏻Sandgren v Chung is among the least likely slam QF EVER! How fun.
— Chris Fowler (@cbfowler) January 22, 2018
Tennys is the winner… again! 🎾@TennysSandgren becomes the 2nd man in the last 20 years to reach the #AusOpen quarterfinals on debut d 5th seed Dominic #Thiem 6-2 4-6 7-6(4) 6-7(7) 6-3. pic.twitter.com/tZCyNo8kXl
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 22, 2018
Sandgren is a Tennessee boy by birth, living in Gallatin almost his entire life and attended the University of Tennessee on a tennis scholarship, and obviously for good reason. He led the Vols to the No. 4 national ranking his freshman year and led them to the national finals.
Sandgren slipped into the world top 100 around the end of 2017 and after these wins over world top 10s, he will likely shoot up dramatically in the next reshuffling of rankings. When asked about his recent success in this tournament, he replied by saying, “I almost want to ask you how surprised are you that I’m still here. It’s definitely surprising.”
If Sandgren is able to get past Korean Hyeon Chung, who is currently world No. 58 and is coming off a win in straight sets over Novak Djokovic, he will likely play either Federer or Nadal in the next round, which will by far be his hardest test of the tournament.
But for an old Tennessee boy who was written off from the start and not given much of a chance, we all have to sit back and applaud the growing legend that is Tennys Sandgren.