Tennis Prose



They Won’t Give Up: Jesse Witten

Jesse Witten once won a set from Novak Djokovic at the US Open. On Louie Armstrong Stadium.

He was a star at University of Kentucky and turned pro in 2005. Witten’s best singles ranking was 163 and believe it or not he’s still out there competing on the ITF circuit. Just weeks ago he played his first ITF event in a year, in the town he lives in now, Naples, Florida.

Witten lost 62 75 to American teenager Zane Khan, in the first round.

He previously played an ITF a year earlier in Naples, winning two rounds before falling to Brazil’s Daniel Dutra Da Silva 63 63.

In his professional career, Witten has a 2-9 record in the ATP and he has accumulated $402,370 in prize money.

Today at age 38, Witten is ranked 1518 in singles and 1118 in doubles in the ATP.

Witten also plays money tournaments, he lost to a New Jersey high school kid and top ranked junior Michael Zheng at a money tournament in Pennsylvania last summer. Zheng is no pushover though, he’s highly ranked in the nation and held a match point in the first round of the 2020 Orange Bowl 18s against the kid from France who eventually won the title Arthur Fils.

Along with his still active pro tennis career, Witten also operates a tennis academy in Naples.

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