By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday August 4, 2021
After reaching a career-high rating of 57 in April of 2019, a groin damage that wanted surgical procedure would find yourself pushing Mackenzie McDonald out of the Prime-100 in August of 2019.
The American, a former UCLA standout, wanted seven months to relaxation and rehab, and his slide down the rankings didn’t cease till all his factors dropped off from the primary half of 2019. By final August, McDonald was clocking in at 269 on the earth, a great distance from the place he was a yr in the past.
However McDonald had gained a whole lot of confidence from his achievements in 2018 and 2019, a interval in that noticed him construct his self-belief as he racked up eight Prime-50 wins and beginning to strut his stuff towards top-flight competiton.
That confidence, mixed with a whole lot of laborious work, has lastly introduced the American again to the Prime-100, and he’s extraordinarily glad to make his return, which was clinched because of his three-set win over Benoit Paire on Wednesday on the Citi Open.
“It is huge,” he stated. “Actually now that is come to one thing. It is about rattling time. I have been grinding, I have been working so laborious to come back again. So many individuals put a lot emphasis on the highest hundred. The gamers do. It is a huge assertion.
“Being again in that’s actually huge for me, to be trustworthy. I personally am going to pat myself on the again. I feel it is very well deserved. I feel I performed some nice tennis this yr. I feel it is simply the beginning once more.”
McDonald has amassed a 34-17 file throughout all ranges, and he has been greater than keen to drop right down to the challenger stage to choose up matches, when vital. He’s performed that seven occasions, however he’s additionally been good on the senior tour, reaching the spherical of 16 on the Australian Open, the second spherical at Roland-Garros and qualifying for Wimbledon, the place he drew Karen Khachanov within the first spherical (no joke).
However now that he’s again contained in the Prime-100 McDonald can absolutely get so much increased, as he’s not defending a whole lot of factors and the ATP rating will return to their typical 52-week format on August 15.
Subsequent cease Prime-50? It would take some time, but it surely’s definitely inside attain.
“I might say I am a greater tennis participant,” the 26-year-old stated, when requested to check himself to the place he was two years in the past. “I used to be taking part in nice tennis, doing a whole lot of actually good issues after I acquired harm. I used to be actually at my peak. I feel stepping away from the court docket for some time, appreciating all of the issues I had out right here, understanding my sport, going by means of it once more, having the arrogance to undergo it once more, too, was huge.
“I feel I’ve extra instruments now. I really feel like I do know — I am older. You be taught issues as you become older. That is simply pure. Extra experiences. Yeah, I am undoubtedly higher now.”