Newest Wildcard: Harrison Joins WSO Field

August 16, 2012 10:25 AM
Ryan Harrison
Ryan Harrison has joined the Winston-Salem Open field as one of four wildcards, tournament director Bill Oakes announced on Thursday.
    Harrison, 20, is generally regarded as the next rising American star. He is currently ranked No. 58 in the ATP World Tour rankings, after starting the year at No. 79. He has been as high as No. 43 in July.
    "Ryan is an exciting young player with a world of talent," Oakes said. "Just as Winston-Salem tennis fans saw Andy Roddick and James Blake grow up before their very eyes, we’re fortunate to be able to watch Ryan’s career unfold."
    Harrison also came to the Winston-Salem Open last year as a wildcard. He beat Victor Hanescu in the first round but lost to Pierre-Ludovic Duclos in the second round.
    Harrison, a native of Shreveport, La., burst onto the scene at age 15 when he competed in the 2007 U.S. Clay Courts Championships in Houston. He beat Pablo Cuevas in the first round, making him one of only 10 players in tennis history to win an ATP World Tour match before his 16th birthday and the first since Rafael Nadal.
    This year, he has reached the semifinals of three tournaments – San Jose, Eastbourne and Newport. He also won a match for the U.S. Davis Cup team in its first-round upset victory over Switzerland.
    While Harrison is still looking for his first ATP World Tour singles title, he owns two doubles crowns. He teamed with Matthew Ebden to win at Atlanta earlier this summer, and also won with Ebden at Newport last year.
    The Winston-Salem Open is set to begin at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex with qualifying starting on Saturday and the Main Draw starting on Sunday.