Denis Kudla

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For the wrestler, see Denis Kudla (wrestler).
Denis Kudla
Flickr - Carine06 - Denis Kudla.jpg
Country (sports)  United States
Residence Arlington, Virginia, U.S.
Born (1992-08-17) August 17, 1992 (age 24)
Kiev, Ukraine
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Turned pro 2008
Plays Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
Prize money $1,514,957
Career record 29–59 (ATP Tour and Grand Slam main draws, and in Davis Cup)
Career titles 0
Highest ranking No. 53 (May 23, 2016)
Current ranking No. 131 (October 17, 2016)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 2R (2016)
French Open 1R (2013, 2016)
Wimbledon 4R (2015)
US Open 2R (2013)
Career record 7–19 (ATP Tour and Grand Slam main draws, and in Davis Cup)
Career titles 0
Highest ranking No. 196 (July 7, 2014)
Current ranking No. 265 (October 17, 2016)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open 1R (2016)
Wimbledon 1R (2013)
US Open 2R (2013)
Last updated on: 17 October 2016.

Denis Kudla (born August 17, 1992) is an American professional tennis player.

Personal life[edit]

Kudla moved from Ukraine to Fairfax, Virginia on his first birthday and soon became an American citizen. He began playing tennis at age 7, in part because his older brother Nikita played tennis, but also because many of his father's friends played. He 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 USA not speaking a word of English, but learned it within a few years.

His mother got permission to pick him up from elementary school one hour early so they could go from Fairfax to the Junior Tennis Champions Center (JTCC) [1] in College Park, Maryland, 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, they moved to Arlington, where Kudla 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, he was home-schooled at JTCC and had to commute on his own to practice in College Park via Metro, lugging two racket bags 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.

Kudla 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. Kudla models his game after Spaniard David Ferrer, and his idol is Roger Federer. Early in his career, Kudla worked out with trainer Greg Petrosian down in Boca Raton where he still trains. He currently works with trainer Chris May and is coached by Billy Heiser, who also coaches fellow American Tim Smyczek.

Playing equipment and sponsorships[edit]

Kudla started playing tennis with a Head racquet, and then switched to Wilson when he was 11. Kudla was sponsored by Wilson early in his career and later signed a contract with Tecnifibre in 2010. Kudla used Luxilon strings, but switched to Tecnifibre string. He likes to hit his balls a little flatter, so Luxilon had given him that little extra pop. Kudla generally strings his racquets at 51 both ways. He 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 Topnotch Management.

Junior tennis[edit]

By age ten, Kudla 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 learn from 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 Virginia 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.[2] 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 with fellow junior Junior A. Ore. The pair, a wild-card entry, lost their first-round match to Lucas Arnold Ker, and Eduardo Schwank. 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. Kudla lost to qualifier Michael Yani in three sets 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.


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 to Jan Hajek. At Wimbledon he again qualified for the main draw and won his first grand slam match against James Duckworth. He could not repeat the victory, losing to Ivan Dodig while plagued with a back injury throughout the three sets. At the 2013 US Open, he beat Jiri Vesely in four set before losing to Thomas Berdych.


After a lackluster start to the 2014 season, he was able to qualify and win his first match at Wimbledon, before falling to Kei Nishikori. The following he week, he returned to the US and won the 2014 Winnetka Challenger. He had a bout with mononucleosis, however, that caused him to miss most of the fall schedule.

He returned to form in the 2015 grass-court season, making the finals of Subiton Challenger, before avenging his finals loss the following week to defeat Matthew Ebden and win the Ikley Challenger. Based on this success, he was rewarded with a wildcard into the main draw of Wimbledon. He began the tournament by defeating 28th seed Pablo Cuevas despite losing the first two sets. In the following rounds, he defeated Alexander Zverev in four sets and Santiago Giraldo in five sets. Kudla was narrowly beaten in the fourth round by US Open champion Marin Čilić.

Career titles[edit]

Singles (7)[edit]

Legend (Singles)
Challengers (5–3)
Futures (2–0)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1. October 11, 2010 Austin, United States Hard United States Tyler Hochwalt 7–5, 6–1
Winner 2. September 26, 2011 Laguna Niguel, United States Hard United States Dennis Lajola 6–4, 6–0
Winner 3. July 29, 2012 Lexington, United States Hard Canada Érik Chvojka 5–7, 7–5, 6–1
Winner 4. November 4, 2012 Charlottesville, United States Hard United States Alex Kuznetsov 6–0, 6–3
Runner-up 5. March 11, 2013 Dallas, United States Hard Austria Jürgen Melzer 6–4, 2–6, 6–1
Winner 6. May 4, 2013 Tallahassee, United States Clay Germany Cedrik-Marcel Stebe 6–3, 6–3
Runner-up 7. March 25, 2014 Guadalajara, Mexico Hard Luxembourg Gilles Müller 2–6, 2–6
Winner 8. June 30, 2014 Winnetka, United States Hard Uzbekistan Farrukh Dustov 6–2, 6–2
Runner-up 9. June 13, 2015 Surbiton, United Kingdom Grass Australia Matthew Ebden 7–6(7–4), 4–6, 6–7(5–7)
Winner 10. June 20, 2015 Ilkley, United Kingdom Grass Australia Matthew Ebden 6–3, 6–4

Doubles (4)[edit]

Legend (Doubles)
Challengers (2–0)
Futures (2–4)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up 1. September 28, 2009 Laguna Niguel Hard United States Raymond Sarmiento United States Ryan Harrison
New Zealand Michael Venus
2–6, 3–6
Runner-up 2. November 9, 2009 Niceville Clay United States Sekou Bangoura Armenia Tigran Martirosyan
Russia Artem Sitak
4–6, 5–7
Winner 3. May 3, 2010 Orange Park Clay United States Andrea Collarini United States Mitchell Frank
United States Junior A. Ore
7–6(8–6), 6–3
Winner 4. May 10, 2010 Tampa Clay United States Junior A. Ore Brazil Clayton Almeida
United States Blake Strode
4–6, 6–3, [10–8]
Runner-up 5. October 18, 2010 Mansfield Hard United States Andrea Collarini Bulgaria Dimitar Kutrovsky
United States Joshua Zavala
3–6, 2–6
Runner-up 6. November 1, 2010 Niceville Hard United States Andrea Collarini United States Robbye Poole
Norway Erling Tveit
6–7(4–7), 2–6
Winner 7. January 20, 2014 Maui, USA Hard Japan Yasutaka Uchiyama United States Daniel Kosakowski
United States Nicolas Meister
6–3, 6–2
Winner 8. June 30, 2014 Winnetka, USA Hard Australia Thanasi Kokkinakis United States Evan King
United States Raymond Sarmiento
6–2, 7–6(7–4)

Singles performance timeline[edit]

(W) Won tournament; reached (F) final, (SF) semifinal, (QF) quarterfinal; (#R) rounds 4, 3, 2, 1; competed at a (RR) round-robin stage; reached a (Q#) qualification round; (A) absent; played in a (Z#) Davis/Fed Cup Zonal Group (with number indication) or (PO) play-off; won a (G) gold, (F-S) silver or (SF-B) bronze Olympic medal; a (NMS) downgraded Masters Series/1000 tournament; or (NH) tournament not held.
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 through the 2016 US Open.

Tournament 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 W–L
Grand Slam Tournaments
Australian Open A A 1R Q1 1R 1R 2R 1–4
French Open A A Q2 1R Q1 Q1 1R 0–2
Wimbledon A A Q3 2R 2R 4R 1R 5–4
US Open A Q3 1R 2R A 1R 1R 1–4
Win–Loss 0–0 0–0 0–2 2–3 1–2 3–3 1–4 7–14
Career statistics
Titles–Finals 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0
Year End Ranking 496 276 137 114 121 69


  1. ^ Clarke, Liz (2013-06-25). "Arlington's Denis Kudla advances to second round of Wimbledon". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2016-10-30. 
  2. ^ "Denis Kudla". Retrieved 2016-10-30. 

External links[edit]