Donald Young Stuns Tennis World With Remarkable Pickleball Performance In Houston

Donald Young, a former professional tennis player, created a stir in the pickleball community at the Veolia Houston Open. His story offers hope to prospective athletes by demonstrating that perseverance pays off, even in unfamiliar fields.
Donald Young

Donald Young

Photo : Instagram/donaldyoungjr
Former tennis pro Donald Young made an incredible run in the men's singles at the Veolia Houston Open, showcasing his skill and perseverance in a thrilling show. Despite being ranked 35th, Young, who is still relatively new to pickleball, proved that Houston was certainly his lucky city.
“I put in a lot more work on the singles court. I did a lot more point play and working on certain shots, so that when I was actually in the match, the shots became second nature and I could execute,” he shared. “I focused more on strategy as opposed to just making the ball.”
Young defeated Frank Anthony Davis, ranked 24th, to start the tournament.
“That was important because I haven’t won many matches, so beating Frank Anthony was awesome,” said Young.
Following his initial success, Young went on to win matchups against Jay Devilliers and youngster Cason Campbell.
“Jay is a friend of mine, and he’s eighth in the world, so he’s really good. Once I won that one, it gave me a bit of confidence to continue playing well,” explained Young.
Young faced off against Connor Garnett, who was ranked third, in the quarterfinals. After a close battle that lasted for a long time, Young prevailed 11-8, 9-11, 12-10.
“Playing Connor was a battle,” said Young. “He’s another friend of mine on tour and we’ve practiced a bit. He beat me the last time we played, so it was nice to get out there and have a good match. It was a lot of fun.”
Young faced sixth-seeded Jaume Martinez Vich on Championship Sunday with the chance to play for a bronze medal despite losing to second-seeded Federico Staksrud in the semifinals. Even though Vich took home the bronze in the end, Young's performance in the competition demonstrates how fast gifted novices can pick up the skills of the game and establish themselves on the professional circuit.
“I’d like to keep the momentum going, but I don’t have any expectations right now,” concluded Young. “I’m just getting better day by day and letting the work and the results happen as they may.”
Looking forward, Young is set to compete at the Veolia LA Open.
Young’s performance at the Veolia Houston Open is a testament to his talent and dedication. As he continues to hone his skills and gain experience, the pickleball world eagerly awaits his next move.
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