2013 US Open quarterfinalist David Ferrer received the second annual “US Open Sportsmanship Award,” presented to the male and female professional tennis players who best demonstrate excellence in sportsmanship throughout the Emirates Airline US Open Series and the US Open. The award was presented to Ferrer today at the US Open by USTA Sportsmanship Selection Committee Chairman and former Flushing Meadows finalist Todd Martin.
Ferrer gave Martin a strong handshake and “thank you,” smiling in his post-match press conference despite a disappointing result earlier in the afternoon. The No. 4 seed rallied from a two-set hole to force a deciding fifth set before France’s Richard Gasquet defeated the Spaniard, 6-3, 6-1, 4-6, 2-6, 6-3.
“I am positive,” said Ferrer, who endured a trying summer season on the hard courts, losing his first match at the Rogers Cup in Montreal to Alex Bogomolov, Jr. and in the third round to Dmitry Tursunov the following week at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati before the start of the US Open. “I think this month I played Montreal and Cincinnati, and I played very bad and feeling bad. I came here to New York playing better, no, than the first day of the month. [I am] happy with my game.”
The USTA started a Sportsmanship Committee in 2011. It’s charge is to “educate and inspire youngsters and their parents to develop and exhibit a high degree of sportsmanship and an attitude of fair play and mutual respect on and off the tennis court. Underlying the charge is the ethical imperative that fairness is more important than winning.”
“As relentless a competitor as David is on the court, he is just as respectful toward the game and his opponents,” said USTA Chairman, CEO and President Dave Haggerty. “David personifies what the US Open Sportsmanship Award represents and certainly deserves the recognition.”
Eligibility requirements for winners include participating in at least two Series tournaments, as well as the 2013 US Open. Each US Open Sportsmanship Award winner receives a trophy and a $5,000 donation to the charity of his or her choice. The women's winner will be announced on Thursday, Sept. 5.