And when you think about it, it was his first match in the ATP main draw, it was his first Grand Slam match, it was his first five-set match, it was his first outdoor tournament this season, and that was the first time, when he faced the top 20. By baptism, Tituan Droge would not have coped halfway. By offering himself to No. 18 seeded Lorenzo Musetti, he will do more than spice up the first day of the US Open. It would be an understatement to say that the Italian, who defeated Novak Djokovic this spring in Monte Carlo, was surprised by the excellent performance of his French opponent Titouan Droge, world No. 171 in his country.
In the first set, the Frenchman showed the same aggressiveness that he had already shown in qualifying, knocking out Garin, Sandgren and Koppejans in succession. When he slid along the line and made a pass from the left that gave him a break point to enter the second set, minutes after three extended volleys that just brought him the first set (6-3), 22-year-old Droge was able to start the game . to think that a damn lucky shot might have been tied up.
He, who has only beaten a player above No. 175 in the ATP rankings once in his life before starting to qualify for the US Open 2023, was just seriously shaking up the world top 20. But Lorenzo Musetti (18th) warded off the danger, took aim with a one-handed left hand and stepped onto the floor to reverse this trend that defied logic (3-6, 6-0).
Four games in a row to the fourth set
Droge, with his expressive tennis and explosive shots (legs and arms move slightly in all directions with each shot, but all with promising explosiveness and agility) was still leading 3-1 in the third set, and then saw Musetti miraculously elude ball. winning from the left and saving an extremely important break point at 4-4.
With his cap upside down and good coverage, Droge was at a net disadvantage in two consecutive points when the tie-break was 2-1 in his favor and he was ultimately to lose 7-5. In the fourth set, Musetti broke first 2-2 before losing four games in a row, and the set with…
Although he gave up, he didn’t show his best fighting spirit in the last set. Droguet took the opportunity to score a goal to go 5-1 away. Musetti was not going to do anything. He played match point well, but saw the second (ace) slip out from under his nose.
In the second round, Droge will face another qualifier on Wednesday, Czech Jakub Mensik (206th), who lost to Grégoire Barrere earlier in the day.