(CNN)As a child, people used to make fun of Duckhee Lee, telling him he should not be playing tennis.
On Monday the South Korean proved the doubters wrong by becoming the first deaf player to win a match in the main draw of the ATP Tour.
The 21-year-old, ranked 212 in the world, saw off Swiss world No. 120 Henri Laaksonen 7-6 (7-4) 6-1 at the Winston-Salem Open in North Carolina.
"People made fun of me for my disability. They told me I shouldn't be playing," Lee told reporters. "It was definitely difficult, but my friends and family helped me get through. I wanted to show everyone that I could do this.
"My message for people who are hearing impaired is to not be discouraged. If you try hard, you can do anything."