Jack Sock burst into tears after an emotional first win since 2018.
Sock, the second largest player in the world two years ago, had not won on the ATP Tour since the Paris Masters in November 2018. His two years of agony ended on Wednesday with an emotional victory over Radu Albot in the first round of the Delray Beach Open in Florida.
Sock recently relied on wildcard entries to participate in tournaments after his world rankings had completely resolved and he remained out of the top 1000 as a ranked player.
Now, 15 months after his last tour win, Sock was overcome on the pitch after gathering and saving a match point to defeat Albot, defending champion at Delray Beach, 3: 6, 6: 3, 7: 6 defeat.
After the native Kansas City American saved a match point to force a tie break in the third set, he came up with the idea of winning the match 7-2 in the breaker. The 27-year-old dropped to his knees after the match point and hid his head in his hands before wiping the tears.
He was clearly emotional and broke down in tears after shaking Albot's hand and retiring to his court seat. He was still wiping the tears when he returned to the court to thank the crowd.
The tennis community celebrated Sock's win, but some found Albot was victorious in 2019, recovering from shoulder surgery, and the level of the game was poor. This is not important for Sock, whose only high point in the past two years has been a victory over the Italian Fabio Fognini in the Laver Cup – an event in which the world competes against the Europeans, but which is not an ATP tour event.
Victory will automatically restore Sock as a leaderboard player and is expected to rise to 770th in the world when the ATP Tour updates its leaderboard next Monday.
He will now play in the second round against American Steve Johnson for a spot in the quarter-finals of Delray Beach.
Tennis commentators were full of emotions when they saw that Sock was finally breaking his 15-month drought.