Unbelievable Debut: Jack Sock Wins His First Professional Pickleball Event

Unbelievable Debut: Jack Sock Wins His First Professional Pickleball Event

by Alfredo Bassanelli

Last updated

Former Top 10 ATP player Jack Sock shined in his professional pickleball debut, clinching victory at the North Carolina Open.

The 30-year-old American has made a successful transition to professional pickleball, leaving a strong impression on spectators and fellow players on his debut. After hinting at a tennis retirement, Sock began his pickleball journey at the North Carolina Open in Charlotte, where he reached the quarterfinals in his singles debut.

Although Sock lost to Jake Kusminder in the men's singles competition, he quickly proved his pickleball qualities in the mixed doubles event. Partnering with Anna Leigh Waters, the highest-ranked woman on the Professional Pickleball Association Tour, the dynamic duo proved unstoppable.

Their journey to the finals began with a decisive win over Jillian Braverman and Jake Kusminder, the same opponent who defeated Sock in the singles event. The pair continued to dominate, taking down Milan Rane and Rafa Hewett, as well as third-seeded Anna Bright and James Ignatovich.

The semifinals saw a more challenging match against the 10th-seeded Vivienne David and Julian Arnold, who managed to snatch a set away from Sock and Waters. Despite this brief stumble, the pair bounced back, securing a 9-11, 11-6, 11-7 victory and advancing to the finals on Championship Sunday.

The Sunday final, which was excluded from the PPA's YouTube broadcast, was scheduled for ESPN2, only to be preempted by a Cornhole tournament. Despite these setbacks, the championship match proved to be a thrilling spectacle.

The first phase of the final saw the fourth-seeded Allyce Jones and Riley Newman expose Sock's weaknesses, winning the opening game with an 11-3 score. However, the tables quickly turned as the Sock and Waters partnership ramped up their aggression, leaving their opponents struggling to keep up.

In the end, Sock and Waters overpowered Jones and Newman, claiming victory with a resounding 11-2 and 11-3 score in the final two games. This triumph marked Jack Sock's first professional pickleball title in mixed doubles and he will surely want to add another in his next event.


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