Taipei, Aug. 31 (CNA) Taiwan's Jimmy Wang may have lost to 16th seed Gilles Simon at the U.S. Open on Thursday, but his ability to compete at a high level still represented an important milestone for a player whose career seemed finished just a few years ago.
Wang lost to the Frenchman 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 in a second round men's singles match that was relatively even throughout but turned in Simon's favor because of his greater consistency.
The 27-year-old Taiwanese had 68 unforced errors during the three-hour match to Simon's 35, with 44 of them coming in the decisive final two sets, according to the match statistics shown on the U.S. Open's official website.
"Losing this match is hard to take. I lost to myself and my impatience because I wanted to win too much," said Wang on his Facebook page.
In the pivotal third set, the 182nd-ranked Wang made 25 unforced errors against 10 winners and was unable to convert any of his four break points.
Simon, who had only two break points in the set, broke through on Wang's serve in the ninth game and then held his own serve to pull ahead.
Wang got an early break in the final set, but quickly gave back the advantage later and his fate was sealed when Simon broke again with Wang serving at 4-4.
Despite the defeat, Wang's performance, which was his best ever showing at a U.S. Open and the first time he had reached the second round of a Grand Slam singles event since 2007, gave him confidence that his comeback is on the right trail.
"This has been a wonderful experience and new milestone," an upbeat Wang wrote. "I'm more certain than ever that my goal in the future is to grab my racket and continue playing internationally until I can't play anymore."
Wang, who was virtually sidelined from April 2008 to October 2010 with a severe injury to his right wrist and was unranked for two years, has improved his ranking from 274th at the start of the year to 182nd at present.
Though his goal initially was to simply see out his recovery to make sure he had no regrets, his recent performance has him thinking about getting back into the top 100, where he generally resided from October 2005 to August 2006, "because I know I was born to play tennis."
His highest career ranking was 85th in March 2006.
(By Luke Sabatier and Kendra Lin)