ATLANTA, Ga. – It took an hour and 12 minutes for Georgia Tech’s Andres Martin to defeat no. 69 Thanasi Kokkinakis in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2, in the first round of the 2022 Atlanta Open on Tuesday during College Night.
Kokkinakis, who captured his first ATP Tour title earlier this year, and Martin stood on serve in the opening set before the Jacket earned a break to go up, 4-2. Martin held serve in the next game, fighting off two break points, to claim a 5-2 edge against the Australian native. The Yellow Jacket closed out the opening set, 6-3, to take a set lead over Kokkinakis, who was making his first appearance since Wimbledon.
On serve at 2-all in the second set, Martin broke Kokkinakis to go up 3-2 and never looked back. Serving at 1-2, Martin won the next five games to seal the victory and secure a place in the second round.
“Once I found out I was playing him [Kokkinakis], I created a game plan and I just stuck to it as hard as I could,” said Martin. “I focused on what I could control and it ended up working out for me.
“I just focused on what we had been working on this whole summer, getting better little by little,” Martin commented. “This win is absolutely huge for me and my confidence.”
Competing in his first ATP Tour event, Martin, ranked No. 736, became the lowest-ranked player to win an ATP Tour or Grand Slam match since No. 863 Yuki Bhambri defeated Jozef Kovalik in the first round of 2022 Pune.
It was a Georgia Tech filled night as Martin was treated to a parade to the courts with Georgia Tech cheerleaders, Buzz and a ride in the legendary Ramblin’ Rack. Prior to first serve, Georgia Tech football head coach Geoff Collins performed the ceremonial coin toss at center court to kick-off the night.
Martin will face no. 78 Adrian Mannarino (FRA) in second round action.
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