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Entries in Denis Kudla (3)

12:55PM

American Denis Kudla Surfing Through Summer

by JAMES HENRY

ATLANTA – In the moment, you are right where you’re supposed to be. The power pushes you across, up and down.

It is a wave. 

Thrilling, especially as you gain speed. A combined state of euphoria, peace, presence and excitement.

When you ride, you want to suspend time. You charge in and rip it up. 

It’s an experience to live. But lose focus and you’re off the board.

After paddling hard on the ATP Challenger Tour, Denis Kudla now is surfing his way through a remarkable summer tennis season.

Kudla was the last American man standing at this year’s Wimbledon, where he advanced to the fourth round. He was the first guy from the U.S. to get that far since 2012.

Now, Kudla has reached his first-ever ATP World Tour semifinal. He is scheduled to play two-time defending champion John Isner at the BB&T Atlanta Open on Aug. 1. 

“I’m feeling really good. My tennis is exactly where I want it to be. I feel like mentally I’m in a really good place,” the 22-year-old said. “Everything in my game is really coming together, and I’m really hoping that I can continue this throughout the whole U.S. swing.”

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7:14AM

Kudla, Calm, and Collected

Yesterday Denis Kudla lost 4-6, 2-6 to Tobias Kamke in his first main draw appearance at the Legg Mason Tennis Classic.   Most of the time when a player loses, unless they are highly ranked, they don't have to do press, so it took me off guard when he walked through the media center on the way to do his post-match interview.  In my scramble to get to his presser I forgot my recorder, but let's just say the guy has maturity that extends well beyond his 18 years.  He was able to effectively analyze what he did right and what he could have improved in the match (get to the net!), talked about the pressure of playing in front of a home crowd (he's from Arlington, VA), and had clear goals of what he wanted to achieve this year (win a challenger and break into the top 250). 

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3:55PM

Meet Denis Kudla

Photo: Kate Whitney-Lucey

Denis Kudla is one of the rising American stars on the ATP World Tour.  Today he stunned Ivo Karlovic in his first round at Newport, 7-6 (4), 4-6, 6-4, and afterwards he sat down with me to do a quick off-court Q & A.

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