The future looks bright for US tennis. After years of waiting, a promising generation of players has arised and the world has taken notice. Taylor Fritz has taken his country’s flag back to the top spots in the sport, but he can still take it even higher.
Like many other athletes who left their mark in the game, Fritz was destined to play tennis. Let’s take a look at the story behind the American sensation.
Taylor Fritz is an American professional tennis player who is currently the world no. 9 of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP). After shining as a junior, he quickly settled in the ATP Tour and went on to win four singles titles to date.
Born and raised in Rancho Santa Fe to father Guy Henry Fritz and mother Kathy May Fritz, tennis was part of Taylor’s life from the very beginning. His parents were both tennis players—Kathy May even made the top 10 on the women’s tour and won 7 WTA titles—and it didn’t take long for him to take interest in the sport.
Unlike his elder (maternal) half-brothers, Chris and Kyle, Fritz started to follow in his mother and father’s footsteps shortly after learning how to walk, as he picked up a racquet for the first time at only 2. As he grew up, Fritz admired Pete Sampras and Juan Martín Del Potro. He eventually develop a similar style of play based on a powerful serve and forehand.
While he attended Torrey Pines High School, where he won the CIF singles title in the San Diego section in his first year, Fritz was already making progress in the sport. Before turning 16, he started to attend an online high school in order to take part in ITF Junior full-time events. From then on, there was no turning back.
Fritz had great performances at the junior Grand Slam tournaments, reaching the semifinals of the boys Wimbledon in 2014. The following year, the American player reached at least the quarterfinals of all four junior Grand Slams, losing in the boys French Open final to Tommy Paul before beating him at the junior US Open final.
That success earned him the 2015 ITF Junior World Champion, becoming the first American to win it since Donald Young in 2005 and Andy Roddick in 2000. Having shone in his junior career, Fritz looked ready to start his professional career.
Fritz made his pro debut on the ATP Challenger Tour after receiving a wild card at the Nottingham ATP, where he took down Pablo Carreno Busta to claim his first ever professional victory. He built on that win by collecting multiple challenger titles, which saw him rise from the 600s to the top 250 of the world rankings.
2016 was a year of growth for Fritz. After winning the Happy Valley challenger against Dudi Sela, he reached the main draw of a Grand Slam for the first time at the Australian Open. Fritz lost in the first round, but it was good enough to receive a wild card for the Memphis Open.
He made a surprising run to the Memphis Open final, losing to veteran star Kei Nishikori. Still, the then 18-year-old Fritz became the youngest American to reach an ATP final since the start of the ATP Tour in 1990. His career kept on the rise in February, when Fritz made the top 100 of the world rankings after reaching the Acapulco quarterfinals in his first ATP 500 tournament.
After making progress in 2017 and 2018, winning his first Grand Slam games, Fritz claimed his first ATP title. In 2019, the American player emerged victorious at the Eastbourne International.
Though he couldn’t win any title the following year, Fritz reached world No. 25 by getting to the ATP 500 Acapulco final, where he lost to Rafael Nadal. A string of bad results saw him drop in the world rankings, but eventually, Fritz found his way back.
Having become the top ranked American player in singles in November 2021, Fritz went on to claim his first ATP Masters 1000 at the 2022 Indian Wells, becoming the first player to defeat Nadal in that stage since Roger Federer in Shanghai 2017.
On top of that, he won titles in Tokyo and Eastbourne. He also helped Team World win the Laver Cup, bouncing back from a defeat to Stefanos Tsitsipas by beating Dominic Thiem in the decider. Fritz added to his trophy cabinet in 2023, winning the United Cup for the USA.
Taylor Fritz tied the knot with female tennis player Raquel Pedraza in 2016, when he was just 18. In January 2017, the couple had a boy, who they called Jordan. However, Fritz and Pedraza split up only two years later, getting a divorce in December 2019. Later, Fritz started dating model and social media personality Morgan Riddle.
The future is still bright for Taylor Fritz, one of the most sensational tennis players that the United States has seen in years. Only time will tell how far he can go in the tour.
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