Former USC teammates and champions Robert Farah and Steve Johnson were reunited for a brief moment as the 2009 and 2010 Pac-10 Doubles Team of the Year both qualified to play in the U.S. Open main draw.
Farah punched his ticket by way of defeating three opponents — Germany’s Dominik Meffert and Andre Begemann and Brazil’s Julio Silva.
On Tuesday, the native Colombian faced France’s Nicolas Mahut, jumping out to an early two-set lead.
Mahut mounted a comeback, however, and managed to take away the next three sets as Farah fell in five sets 6-3, 7-6 (4), 2-6, 4-6, 6-0.
Before returning to the United States to compete in the qualifying rounds for the U.S. Open, Farah played professionally in Colombia, winning four singles titles and two doubles titles. His most recent accomplishment was winning the 2010 Seguros Bolivar Open in Bogotá.
At USC, Farah led the Trojans to the first of their three consecutive NCAA championships and also won the 2008 NCAA doubles championship.
Johnson, who earned a wild-card spot by virtue of winning the 2011 NCAA singles championship, will face USA’s Alex Bogomolov Jr. today at 11 a.m.
The three-time NCAA champion will return for his senior season at USC this year as the Trojans attempt to win their fourth consecutive title.
Along with Johnson, USC also returns senior Daniel Nguyen and sophomores Ray Sarmiento, Emilio Gomez, Michael Grant and Corey Smith from its 2011 national championship team.
The Trojans upended then-undefeated No. 1 Virginia by a score of 4-3 in the NCAA title match in late May.
If Johnson advances, he will likely face No. 6 seed Robin Soderling, who has advanced to the quarterfinals the last two years in the U.S. Open.