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Roforot 07-22-2004 07:14 AM

junior slam possible
During the wimbledon finals, they showed a junior match featuring this French kid who's won the French and Australian, and subsequently wimbledon. If he plays the U.S. open as a junior, he could have the junior slam! Has anyone won this before? What do you think of his potential when he turns pro?

rhubarb 07-22-2004 07:44 AM

Yes, it's Gael Monfils. He could indeed win a junior Grand Slam this year, but I've read somewhere recently that he's not intending to play the junior US Open and seems more interested in the pro level now.

If he did achieve it, he would be following in Stefan Edberg's footsteps - he won the junior Grand Slam in 1983.

@wright 07-22-2004 07:46 AM

That would be Gael Monfils. No one has won the junior slam since Edberg in '83, I think. I think it is widely recognized that junior slam success is no guarantee for ATP success, but obviously if a kid can work to improve much more after junior success, then he can follow it up favorably. As a side note, Federer is one of only a few people to win both the Wimbledon boy's title and gentleman's.

@wright 07-22-2004 09:42 AM

Nice timing, rhubarb, you just barely beat me to it!

Feņa14 07-22-2004 10:04 AM

I saw Monfils at Wimbledon this year and he looks a very good player, he has a very good serve and a good all round game. I might add though, that he had stiff competition in the final from Miles Kasiri who also looks like he has the potential to do well on the main tour.

don knot 07-22-2004 11:51 AM

Monfils does look good, but even the top tier in the junior ranks is a good bit away from even the top 200 on the tour.
Also, Thomas Enqvist won the junior slam.

Mark55 07-22-2004 12:04 PM

I think Americans Alex Kuznetsov and Brendan Evans have a very good chance of going far in the US Open though. I think Kuznetsov can upset anyone there if he is playing to his real ability(I saw him hitting with fellow Americans Brian Baker and Thomas Blake before a Pro Circuit tournament and he has a great deal of talent.) While Brendan Evans is a very good doubles player and has one a couple of double grand slam titles, I think he has a good chance to get far in singles as well.

miguelcoletta 07-22-2004 12:18 PM

In 1987 Nicolas Pereira was close to winning the junior you can see that means nothing since he wasn't a good player in the ATP.

guernica1 07-22-2004 02:57 PM

Don't forget Daniel Elsner who was a big time junior champ but now at 25 is playing better but still a long ways off what people thought he could becomel, although he partied too much.

Monfils is like a 'junior Roddick' even down to the serving stance.

From what I'm hearing he isn't even bothering to show up tot he US Open this year.

callitout 07-23-2004 06:34 PM

the results at recent RCA tournament are telling. Lots of top juniors lost early on to journeymen pros. Alex Kuznetsov (considered by many Americas top junior prospect) lost in qualies to Noam Okun rank between 100-200. Amer Delic recent NCAA champ lost to Karol Beck. Rajeev Ram lost to Ivan Ljubjic (Ivan is having his best tournament this year and just beat Grosjean). Agree with posters who recognize the gap between even the very best juniors and top 150 players. Among top juniors all have potential the real question is how much will they improve over the next five years.

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