Though they may be lower-ranked than the seeds and the rest of the field that was able to gain direct entry into the US Open, the players who fought through the qualifying rounds can be primed to make waves in the main draw. With multiple matches under their belt before the tournament even starts, they’ll be battle-tested and eager to keep up their winning ways. Here’s a look at several players that could have an impact on their respective draws in New York this year.

1. Rebecca Marino

The main event is still a couple of days away, but already Marino has established herself as one of the feel-good stories of the tournament. The 30-year-old Canadian last played the US Open in 2011: That was before a hiatus to focus on her mental health took her away from the game. Over the course of her comeback the past three years, she’s posted some positive results, including a run to the third round in Canada a few weeks ago. There, she beat Madison Keys and Paula Badosa, two impressive wins, and she’s now won five of her last six matches.


2. Ana Konjuh

It might be hard to fathom at this point, but at the beginning of 2021, Konjuh was ranked well outside of the Top 400, due to her burgeoning career taking a hit for health reasons. Since then, though, she’s worked her way back into the Top 100, and the US Open marks the third Slam she’s qualified for this year. Though she didn’t make the cutoff point for direct entry rankings-wise heading into New York, the young Croatian was the top seed in the pre-tournament and played like it, winning all three of her matches in straight sets. The 2016 Open quarterfinalist will be a tough out for any higher-ranked player in the field, especially with momentum on her side.


3. Chris Eubanks

A few months ago, Eubanks snapped a three-year drought and won his second career Challenger title in Orlando, Fla. However, the American was unable to build upon that momentum and actually entered the US Open qualifiers on a three-match losing streak. Hitting on all cylinders from the first ball, Eubanks won his first two matches in straight sets, but his mini-run came to an end in the final round when Sebastian Baez won the first set 6-2. Undaunted, the 25-year-old took the second 7-5, then, with so much on the line, prevailed in a third-set tiebreak to set up his first main draw showing at a Slam since Australia last year. The 25-year-old will definitely be motivated to go further.

4. Kristyna Pliskova

2021 had its share of low moments on-court for the Czech veteran, including being forced to play the qualifying rounds at a major for the first time in five years. Though she hadn’t contested a hard-court event since Miami in the spring, Pliskova showed in New York the past few days just how effective her game can be on the surface as she only dropped one set in three matches. Consistency has been a struggle for the 29-year-old over the course of her career, but if she can maintain her recent form, she might be able to catch some higher-ranked foes off-guard and come away with a win or two.


5. Maximilian Marterer

It’s a process, working one’s way back from injury, especially when it seems things were clicking right before, prompting a focus on both physical and mental recovery. Marterer, who reached the fourth round of the French Open back in 2018, has been going through that the past couple of years as he tries to make a return to the world’s Top 50. The 26-year-old German qualified for the French Open in June and now has a second main-draw appearance at a major coming his way after battling through three-setters in two of his three New York matches. With wins over players like Gael Monfils and Diego Schwartzman in his career, Marterer knows how to compete against top-level talent and could make waves in New York.