Dominik Köpfer:

He wanted to survive the qualification, he made it to the second round: There failed tennis player Dominik Koepfer though to Daniil Medvedev.

Nevertheless, German is one of the winners of this US Open. Before the start of the tiebreaks in the fourth movement, the audience rose at Louis Armstrong Stadium in New York.

They had done so often in the previously played 2:27 hours of this round of 16 between Dominik Koepfer and Daniil Medvedev, always when the German had scored a spectacular point.

But now stood the nearly 10,000 spectators, because they realized that Koepfer needed their support. He had to win at the standings of 6: 3, 3: 6, 2: 6 and 6: 6 this tiebreak to prevent the end at the US Open.

And the audience, in turn, apparently wanted to see more of this 25-year-old, whose names only a few days ago knew only insiders.

All the applause, the press of the thumb and the "Let's go, Koepfer" calls did not help, the qualifier lost the World Ranking Five in four sets.

It was a fantastic experience today, I've never played in front of so many people calling my name, Koepfer said after the match.

As refreshing as he appeared on the tennis courts in Flushing Meadows, he also gives himself to the media.

When Koepfer speaks, he also says something. And so, for example, he talked eloquently about his time at Tulane University, where he studied finance and played tennis.

In the college league NCAA, team spirit is paramount. It's about the team, not the individual player. And part of it is played under conditions that are not found on any ATP tournament. 

19-year-old drunken students, trash talk from the stands - that's the point," says Koepfer. "But that's what matters.

His studies are also the reason why Koepfer is hardly known in his homeland. Anyone who plays in the US at college moves outside the German radar.

In childhood and adolescence, Koepfer played golf as well as tennis and was passionate about skiing.

Only at age 16, when others competed in international tournaments, did he take tennis a little more seriously, training "three or four times a week, not just once or twice," he says.

Sometimes there were five spectators

He had gone to the US Open to survive the three qualifying rounds and get into the peloton. He made it to the second round.

In his career so far, the left-hander has recorded at $ 332,732 since 2016, according to, and has now earned $ 280,000 in New York.

I've improved from match to match, Koepfer said. So far, his stage was mostly second-rate Challenger tournaments.

Who opens there, often plays in the exclusion of the public. "Sometimes," said Koepfer, "there were five spectators and from time to time only my coach was there."

And that's why Sunday's contrast could not have been bigger when Koepfer arrived at Armstrong Stadium.

The fact that the match was a home game, was partly because of the Americans underdog stories like his love.

Besides, Medvedev is the bad boy for the New Yorker, since he had ripped in the round before a ball child the towel offered him from his hand and then tapped his middle finger to the temple.

Koepfer played as if there were not nearly 10,000 spectators around him. As if this was not the most important game of his career.

The man who wears his white baseball cap as if he were in a hurry and therefore did not have time to set it right led 6: 3, 2: 0. But then Medvedev turned on.

Koepfer should have also caused the stress of recent weeks. Of all the eighth-finalists he had to cover the longest route due to the qualification.

The match against Medvedev was his seventh in New York. "Keep it up, then you'll be an incredible player," Medvedev told him on the net. He knew Koepfer said, that "this run will change my life."


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