Jenson Brooksby won a battle of Northern Californians on Thursday at the Atlanta Open, downing Mackenzie McDonald 6-3, 6-4 to advance to the his second quarter-final of the season.
The 21-year-old from Sacramento is back at home on the American hard courts as he looks to repeat his February run to the Dallas final.
“I’ve trained on [hard courts] my whole life, so just the reps on it makes [confidence] a guarantee for now,” Brooksby said of his comfort level on the surface. “I’m really excited to have the hard-court season right now coming up and see what I can do.”
Brooksby dropped serve in the opening game of the match, but snapped into gear for an immediate break back. He saved the only other two break points he faced at 3-2 in the second set as he served to consolidate his lead before running out a comfortable winner.
“We’re good friends… I knew it would definitely be a good match out there, a good battle, and it was,” he said post-match. “I thought my focus again today was pretty good, so I’m just looking forward to keeping it up.”
Brooksby improved to 6-3 against Americans at tour-level after winning his first ATP Head2Head meeting with McDonald. Up one place to No. 42 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings, the Atlanta sixth seed could move as high as No. 32 by winning his first tour-level title this week — a mark which would be a new career-high.
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He awaits the winner of second seed John Isner’s evening matchup against University of Florida star Ben Shelton.
Adrian Mannarino was also victorious on Thursday, earning a 7-5, 6-3 win against American wild card and Georgia Tech standout Andres Martin. Mannarino will face the winner of the all-Aussie matchup between third seed Alex de Minaur and James Duckworth.