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Biofile: Denis Kudla Interview

I did this Biofile with Denis Kudla in Newport right after his big win versus Ivo Karlovic way back in 2011. Today Kudla defeated Yuichi Sugita 62 75 to advance to the Halle semis…

By Scoop Malinowski

Ranking: 109

DOB: August 17, 1992 In: Kiev, Ukraine

Ht: 5-11  Wt: 165

First Tennis Memory: Hitting a wall at a local park when I was about seven. I was following my brother playing tennis. My dad was coaching my brother first. I did what my brother did. That was definitely my first memory.

Tennis Inspirations: Is definitely Federer. Just looking at everything he’s done, you love him, you want to be just like him. So you work toward that goal. My dad inspires me, my whole family inspires me a lot. Because they picked up the game when I picked up the game. And they love it. I see how much they love it, I try to love it as much as they do. It’s like they love it more than me [smiles]. But I still love the game.

Nicknames: Kuds, Kudla, Dudla. That’s it, nothing good.

Last Book Read: Think Like A Champion by Donald Trump. Very good book. I have to read it again, to really understand it all.

Favorite Movies: Comedies and The Hangover.

Favorite Meal: A cheeseburger.

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: Vanilla.

Pre-Match Feeling: I get pretty nervous because I care. Just be in a zone. Just make sure it’s all the energy you have and just go out there and leave everything on the court. Just fight.

Greatest Career Moment: Winning today against Ivo Karlovic (76 46 64). Yeah. First match point I was like, wow, one point away. Just return it and you have a chance. I had belief the whole match I could win. But the real belief came at match point. The first one I got the return back, hit a lob but he didn’t go for it and I missed. Then the second one I actually hit the return winner. Backhand cross court.

Most Painful Moment: Probably losing the final of US Open juniors last year (2010 to Jack Sock). After having a great run. Being so close to winning a junior final and losing.

Favorite Tournaments: I love playing the Slams and really Newport. I really love the town, I love the atmosphere. I feel like I belong here.

Funniest Players: Isner and Querrey are pretty funny. They always make you laugh.

Toughest Competitors Encountered: Ryan Harrison. So fierce.

Embarrassing tennis Memory: Showing up for a match a day late when I was younger. Most tournaments in the section started on a Saturday, this one started on a Friday. So I showed up on Saturday and then realized my match…”you defaulted yesterday.” So it was pretty bad.

Strangest Match: In Newport last year I went 7-5 in the third with nine breaks in a row. So that was pretty strange. Against a pro who was 110 in the world, Santiago Ventura, first round.

Favorite Players To Watch: I still like to watch Federer a lot. Nadal. I like to watch Dimitrov.

Favorite Sport Outside Tennis: Basketball.

Funny Tennis Memory: I was playing in a big nationals 16s, it was a final. It was like a really big point, I had an overhead – probably like a thousand people watching – and I completely whiffed on it. So that was pretty embarrassing. In the final.

Why Do You Love Playing Tennis: I love it because it’s an individual sport. You get all the credit for doing all the good things, bad things…no one to blame. So I like that a lot.

People Qualities Most Admired: I admire a lot of people who are very independent on themselves. I admire a lot of people who come from nothing and they have strong personalities. I admire that a lot. And just hard workers.

Best You Ever Felt On Court: Tough question…I would say Eddie Herr International, the finals. I felt unbelievable there actually. I just realized no matter how close this match is – 67, 4 and 4 – I knew I was gonna win. I enjoyed it so much I wanted to be out there forever. After the match they told me it was three and a half hours. I was like, You’re kidding me! I felt like I was out there for 45 minutes [smiles]. (Against who?) Marton Fucsovics, Hungary.



  • Joe Blow · June 23, 2018 at 10:09 am

    Reality returns for the life of a ranked player in the 100’s.
    Kudla plays Fed to 7-6 7-5 in the semi’s, then it’s beck to quailed for Wimby.

    Mentally it has to be a killer lifestyle. Up with the big boys, then back down to the lower levels

  • Hartt · June 23, 2018 at 11:17 am

    Yes, having to switch between the tour level and the Challengers and qualies must be very tough.

    Shapovalov talked about that last year. He went right from playing Wimbledon, with its traditions, top players, and excellent facilities, to playing Challengers in two small Quebec communities. He said even when the Challengers were well-run, he missed the amenities of the nice hotels, good food, etc. It was an extra incentive to make the main tour.

    He won in Gatineau and made the SF in Granby. He said doing well in those tourneys helped him have that great run in Montreal. So I imagine he was glad he did play them. But he is probably just as glad that he has left the Challenger circuit behind him.

  • crusher parts edmonton · July 1, 2018 at 1:24 pm

    d reading through this, very good stuff, thanks.



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