Denis Kudla

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Denis Kudla
Flickr - Carine06 - Denis Kudla.jpg
Country United States
Residence Arlington, Virginia, United States
Born (1992-08-17) August 17, 1992 (age 21)
Kiev, Ukraine
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Turned pro 2008
Plays Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
Prize money $504, 378
Singles
Career record 12-24 ATP World Tour
Career titles 0 (ATP World Tour)
Highest ranking No. 90 (July 8, 2013)
Current ranking No. 120 (July 7, 2014)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 1R (2012, 2014)
French Open 1R (2013)
Wimbledon 2R (2013, 2014)
US Open 2R (2013)
Doubles
Career record 4-9 ATP World Tour
Career titles 0 (ATP World Tour)
Highest ranking No. 213 (January 27, 2014)
Current ranking No. 236 (April 23, 2014)
Grand Slam Doubles results
French Open Junior QF (2009)
Wimbledon 1R (2013)
US Open 1R (2011)
US Open Junior 2R (2009)
Last updated on: January 8, 2014.

Denis Kudla (born August 17, 1992 in Kiev, Ukraine) is a professional tennis player. Representing the United States, he is a former world no. 3 junior player who has, still early in his career, appeared in a handful of ATP World Tour main-draw matches.

Personal Life[edit]

Kudla moved from Ukraine to Fairax, Virginia on his first birthday and soon became an American citizen. Denis first started playing tennis at age 7 because his older brother, Nikita played, and also because many of his father's friends played. Denis would tag along as Nikita took informal lessons from their father in Fairfax's Van Dyck Park. Kudla's father Vladimir Kudla, a successful architect, took his family out of Ukraine shortly after the Soviet Union collapsed. Kudla's parents came to the U.S. not speaking a word of English and they amazingly picked it all up in a year or two. His mother got permission to pick him up from elementary school one hour early so they could race from Fairfax to College Park, where she’d wait through his two-hour practices, drive him home while he slept, then wake him for dinner and homework. At age 13, the Kudlas moved to Arlington, where Denis was set to matriculate at Washington-Lee High School. But six hours of court time each day left no room for traditional high school, so starting in ninth grade, Denis was home-schooled while he attended the College Park program and had to commute on his own to practice in College Park via Metro, lugging two racket bags bigger than he was and changing trains twice during rush hour. "My parents were strict, but not crazy strict. I was never spoiled. I wanted tennis. It was always my dream." One of Kudla's favorite experiences was visiting the White House for the 2013 Easter Egg Roll as he got to meet President Barack Obama, and NFL Pro Bowlers Anquan Boldin and Adrian Peterson.

Denis is an avid fan of sports, as he supports the Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Capitals, Washington Wizards, Washington Nationals and occasionally the San Francisco 49ers, San Francisco Giants, and Boston Celtics. He also enjoys watching the Premier League as he supports Chelsea F.C.. Kudla enjoys hanging out at the beach, and also hanging out with friends. He also plays a mean game of ping pong and golf, and loves eating at Chipotle Mexican Grill. Kudla is also known to play many games on his iPhone such as Words With Friends and Temple Run, and he also enjoys using Spotify. He is also extremely organized, and enjoys shopping at J.Crew. He enjoys watching many t.v. shows such as Duck Dynasty, Suits, Game of Thrones, and Californication. Kudla models his game after Spaniard David Ferrer, and his idol is Roger Federer. He is also incredibly good at Fantasy Football, as he recently reached the finals in his league. Early in his career, Kudla worked out with trainer Greg Petrosian down in Boca Raton where he still trains. He currently trains with Rodney "Rocket" Marshall, who is a Strength and Conditioning Specialist for Player Development at USTA who makes Denis work extremely hard, with many different techniques, such as making him run in sand dunes. He is currently coached by Argentinian Diego Moyano who is a Player Development coach for the USTA.

Playing Equipment and Sponsorships[edit]

Kudla started playing tennis with a head racquet, and then switched to Wilson when he was 11. He says he thinks he used almost every Wilson racquet as he constantly was switching to find the perfect fit and because he always thought he needed something different. He really cared about how his racquet looked, not just how it felt, but when he became older he stopped constantly changing. Kudla was sponsored by Wilson early in his career and used nCode for awhile, and got into KFactor for a little bit as well. His favorite racquet was the Wilson Pro Staff 95. When he went pro, he tried Tecnifibre, as he was trying out some new racquets and just trying to get a feel for how they felt. He felt Tecnifibre suited his game best, so he stuck with it and switched racquets. He got a good contract with Tecnifibre in 2010, and it worked out since he liked them the best. Denis prefers stiff racquets and likes them built a little more solid. Kudla used Luxilon as his string for his whole life, but changed to a Tecnifibre string, which is almost identical to the Luxilon. Denis likes to hit his balls a little flatter, so Luxilon had given him that little extra pop. Furthermore, he generally strings his racquets at 51 both ways, but he'll adjust the tension depending on surfaces and the weather. Denis restrings his racquets for practice, but plays with new ones during matches. He estimates that he spends around $12,000 a year on stringing each year.

Kudla has a sponsorship deal with Lacoste, and is represented by tennis agent Sam Duvall at Lagardere Unlimited.

Junior Tennis[edit]

By age ten, Denis had enrolled at the US Tennis Association's prestigious regional training center at College Park, Maryland. There, he was able to practice and play alongside other rising young American stars and sponge off the expertise of some of the country's finest coaches. "It was a great environment to be there," Kudla says. "All my friends were close; I got to live at home and play at one of the best academies in the country." In 2008 as the number one seed, he won the 16-and-under age bracket at the Orange Bowl, beating current Virginia tennis player, Mitchell Frank. At the time, both players trained together at College Park. With the win, which was his first in major international competition, Kudla became the first American to win the Boys’ 16s title since Donald Young in 2003. Kudla also participated in the 2008 BNP Paribas Showdown vs Junior Ore at Madison Square Garden, as they were the under-card for Roger Federer and Pete Sampras who competed against each other afterwards. Soon after, Kudla turned pro even though he had great interest from the University of Southern California as he was the 2nd ranked senior in the nation. Kudla reached a career-high combined junior ranking of world no. 3. He believes the turning point in his junior tennis career was when he came from behind to beat junior tennis prodigy Trey Hatcher of Knoxville, TN 7-5, 7-6 at the Boys 12s National Hard Court Championships in 2003.[1] His best result was reaching the final of the 2010 US Open for boys, where, despite taking the first set, he lost the final to Jack Sock.

Tour career[edit]

Kudla reached the semifinals of his second professional tour event, U.S.A. F15 ITF Futures event, held in New York in June 2008. He first played an ATP Tour main-draw match six weeks later, in doubles at the 2008 Legg Mason Tennis Classic, partnering fellow junior Junior A. Ore. The pair, a wild-card entry, lost their first-round match to Lucas Arnold Ker and Eduardo Schwank 1–6, 1–6. Two years later, he was given a wild card for the singles main draw of the 2010 Campbell's Hall of Fame Tennis Championships, and reached the second round where he lost to fellow American, Ryan Harrison.

Kudla has won three Challenger singles titles and two doubles Futures titles thus far in his career. His career-high singles ranking is world no. 112, which he reached in June 2013. His high doubles ranking is world no. 291. His only tour-level doubles match win came in reaching the second round in doubles at the 2011 U.S. Men's Clay Court Championships, partnering Donald Young. Kudla reached the quarterfinals in singles at the 2011 Campbell's Hall of Fame Tennis Championships, having knocked off big-serving Ivo Karlović in three sets, and then second seed Grigor Dimitrov handily 6–1, 6–4. Kudla lost to qualifier Michael Yani 3–6, 7–6, 5–7 in the quarterfinals.

Kudla played his first Legg Mason Tennis Classic in Washington, D.C. in 2011, losing in the first round to Tobias Kamke 4–6, 2–6.

In 2012, Kudla qualified for the main draw of a grand slam for the first time at the Australian Open. He lost in the first round to Tommy Haas. He qualified for the 2012 SAP Open in San Jose, California and beat Jack Sock in the first round 6–4, 6–7, 6–3.

In March 2012, Denis Kudla lost to Roger Federer in the second round of Indian Wells Masters tournament 6–4, 6–1.

In 2013 at the Australian Open he lost in the first round of qualifying to Julian Reister. Then at the French Open he qualified for the main draw before losing 2-6, 7-5, 0-6, 4-6 to Jan Hajek. At Wimbledon he again qualified for the main draw and won his first grand slam match against James Duckworth 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 4-6, 6-1. He could not repeat the victory, losing to Ivan Dodig while plagued with a back injury throughout the three sets.

Kudla is currently coached by Diego Moyano.

Career titles[edit]

Singles (3)[edit]

Legend (Singles)
Challengers (3)
Futures (1)
No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
1. October 11, 2010 United States USA F26 Hard United States Tyler Hochwalt 7–5, 6–1
2. July 29, 2012 United States Lexington, United States Hard Canada Érik Chvojka 5–7, 7–5, 6–1
3. November 4, 2012 United States Charlottesville, United States Hard United States Alex Kuznetsov 6–0, 6–3
4. May 4, 2013 United States Tallahassee, United States Clay Germany Cedrik-Marcel Stebe 6–3, 6–3

Doubles (2)[edit]

Legend (Doubles)
Challengers (0)
Futures (2)
No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
1. May 3, 2010 United States USA F11 Clay United States Andrea Collarini United States Mitchell Frank
United States Junior A. Ore
7–6(8–6), 6–3
2. May 10, 2010 United States USA F12 Clay United States Junior A. Ore Brazil Clayton Almeida
United States Blake Strode
4–6, 6–3, [10–8]

Singles performance timeline[edit]

Key
W  F  SF QF #R RR LQ (Q#) A P Z# PO SF-B F S G NMS NH

Won tournament; or reached Final; Semifinal; Quarter-final; Round 4, 3, 2, 1; competed at a Round Robin stage; lost in Qualification Round; absent from tournament event; played in a Davis Cup Zonal Group (with its number indication) or Play-off; won a bronze, silver (F or S) or gold medal at the Olympics; a downgraded Masters Series/1000 tournament (Not a Masters Series); or a tournament that was Not Held in a given year.

To avoid confusion and double counting, these charts are updated either at the conclusion of a tournament, or when the player's participation in the tournament has ended.

Current till 2014 Australian Open.

Tournament 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 W–L
Grand Slam Tournaments
Australian Open A A 1R Q1 1R 0–2
French Open A A Q2 1R Q1 0–1
Wimbledon A A Q3 2R 2R 2–2
US Open A Q3 1R 2R 1–2
Win–Loss 0–0 0–0 0–2 2–3 1–2 3–7
Career statistics
Titles–Finals 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0
Year End Ranking 496 276 137 114

References[edit]

External links[edit]