Tennis Prose



Juncheng Shang Impresses Marcelo Rios

By Scoop Malinowski

Juncheng Shang is only seventeen years old but he just won his first ATP Challenger title in Lexington, KY and has vaulted to no. 241 in the ATP rankings. Shang’s 64 64 final win vs Emilio Gomez thrilled his new coach Marcelo Rios, the former world no. 1 for six weeks in 1998.

Rios said in an Instagram post this week that to work with Shang since July 22 and to see him win his first ATP Challenger title live from a front row seat in Lexington, has reawakened his love for tennis…

“I tell you that experience this weekend was to re-vibe with tennis itself, was to be with Chinito and see him play at an impressive level. For those who do not know, I only managed to be with him six days training and to help him in some things. The interesting thing is that with the age he has, he needs a lot to learn and that motivates me a lot. You are very unique Jerry, congratulations.”

Shang originally moved to Naples, Florida to train at Sanchez Academy and then decided to relocate to IMG Academy in Bradenton at age fifteen and one year later earned the ITF world no. 1 ranking.

Rios also said Shang has never had a full time coach. And negotiations are underway to contract Rios to coach Shang but not on a full time travel basis.

The Shang-Rios connection has proven to be a very fruitful alliance already in just about seven days of work together, Shang has shown remarkable improvement and results. Now the question is how much more value and impact can the unique range of Rios wisdom and knowledge have on this prodigious talent?

And will the chemistry continue to evolve favorably and respectfully, without interference of ego and money?

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