Mylan World TeamTennis celebrates its 40th birthday this year. For more on WTT, including this season's schedule, click here.
It’s safe to say Denis Kudla is riding high right now. You might even say he’s refusing to lose, after stringing together 13 wins in 15 matches and his best major result, a fourth-round showing at Wimbledon. It’s a mantra that fits perfectly with his hometown Washington Kastles, the four-time reigning Mylan World TeamTennis champions.
Kudla’s story was stuck in a completely different chapter a month ago. The rising American found himself ranked No. 139 after bowing out in the first round of Roland Garros qualifying. In dire need of a surface switch, Kudla slowly but surely regained his footing at two ATP Challenger Tour events to earn a Wimbledon main draw wild card, but it was his opening-round performance at the All England Club that sparked his inner-belief. Kudla battled back from two sets down to oust 28th seed Pablo Cuevas and drew on that performance to make a run in London, bringing himself back inside the Top 100 for the first time in 21 months.
“I had two really, really good weeks on grass right before. I never had that much confidence coming into a Grand Slam,” Kudla tells tennis.com. “To pull out the first match the way I did, I felt like I could win in any situation. It was just kind of the perfect storm for the last three weeks on grass.”
While Kudla is excited about his change in fortune, his priorities are not with himself this week, but rather his team, the Kastles. The Arlington, Va. native made his Mylan WTT debut Sunday evening in Boston.
“I’m really excited be a part of World TeamTennis for the first time. Having the confidence from Wimbledon and being able to bring that over to the States now, I’m just really looking forward to it,” Kudla says. “I’ve never played this well in my life on a consistent basis, on a high level. To finally get that opportunity now, to play in front of a lot of my family and friends in a packed stadium with the team that the city gets behind so much, you really couldn’t ask for a better situation in tennis.”
Kudla will star in front of his hometown fans Tuesday night and looks to make quick adjustments following his first match. The 22-year-old went down to Boston Lobster Alex Kuznetsov 5-0 in men’s singles, but regrouped with Rajeev Ram for a 5-4 comeback victory in men’s doubles to clinch the season opener for the Kastles.