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post #11 of (permalink) Old 05-20-2010, 04:13 AM
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Re: Top 500 - Japan, China, Korea

Nice thread!

Here's what little I know about Japanese players.
Originally Posted by seulCONTREtous View Post
Go Soeda

Age: 25
Height: 178 cm
Current ranking: 145
Career high ranking: 106

Titles 2010: Manta Challenger, Japan F2 and F3
Other noteable performances 2010: SF at Busan and Baton Rouge Challenger
Outlook: might crack the top 100 someday
Soeda is coached by David Sanguinetti since January.
Sucks on clay. He has played only three challengers on the surface. Understandably he skipped RG qualies this year.

Yuichi Sugita

Age: 21
Current ranking: 202
Career high ranking: 186

Titles 2010: Kyoto Challenger
Other noteable performances 2010: SF at Burnie Challenger
Outlook: -
In 2006, he won both singles and doubles in the U18 all-Japan junior championship. He also won the World Super Junior tournament in Osaka that year, the first Japanese player to do so since Takao Suzuki. (Recent winners of the event include Pimpim, Baghdatis, Harrison, Bhambri)
Currently studies at Waseda University while playing on the futures/challenger circuit.
Likes to hit flat and on the rise.

Kei Nishikori

Age: 20
Height: 178 cm
Current ranking: 244
Career high ranking: 56

Titles 2010: Sarasota Challenger, Savannah Challenger
Other noteable performances 2010: -
Outlook: should be back in top 100 soon, has enough talent to reach the top 20
Just come to Kei's forum.

Tatsuma Ito

Age: 22
Current ranking: 257
Career high ranking: 201

Titles 2010: -
Other noteable performances 2010: QF at Busan Challenger
Likes to hit flat, like many Japanese players. Played a tough three setter with Nishikori in Tallahassee.

Takao Suzuki

Age: 33
Height: 175 cm
Current ranking: 300
Career high ranking: 102

Titles 2010: -
Other noteable performances 2010: -
Outlook: past his prime
But still the most popular player by far among tennis fans after Nishikori.
Serve and volley. Has a big serve for his height.

Yuichi Ito

Age: 23
Height: 182 cm
Current ranking: 333
Career high ranking: 333

Titles 2010: Japan F1
Other noteable performances 2010: SF at Japan F2, F3 and F4
Outlook: -
Don't know much about him.

Hiroki Kondo

Age: 27
Height: 178 cm
Current ranking: 389
Career high ranking: 358

Titles 2010: -
Other noteable performances 2010: QF at Busan Challenger, F at Korea F2 and Japan F2
Outlook: -
A good doubles player. Touted as the heir to the retired Satoshi Iwabuchi in DC doubles.

Hiroki Moriya

Age: 19
Height: 168 cm
Current ranking: 423
Career high ranking: 382

Titles 2010: -
Other noteable performances 2010: F at Japan F1
Outlook: -
Runner-up to Yuki Bhambri at World Super Junior tournament in 2008.

Junn Mitsuhashi

Age: 20
Height: 163 cm
Current ranking: 441
Career high ranking: 295

Titles 2010: -
Other noteable performances 2010: SF at Korea F1
Outlook: -
I have yet to watch him play but he is one Japanese player I'd very much like to see play. A little fighter who likes clay as well as serve & volley. Born in UK and grew up there and in Japan. Won All-Japan junior high school championship in 2004.
Based in Germany since 2009. A good doubles player too. Won four consecutive futures doubles titles in 2009. His blog is quite a good read as well. (In Japanese though.)


Shuichi Sekiguchi
Age: 18
Height: 160 cm
Current ranking: 708
Career high ranking: 703

Titles 2010: -
Other noteable performances 2010: F at Japan F4, SF at Japan F1 and F3
Outlook: -
Had a decent junior career. He was seeded #4 at RG junior singles last year.

Yasutaka Uchiyama

Age: 17
Height: 183 cm
Current ranking: 721
Career high ranking: 718

Titles 2010: Japan F4
Other noteable performances 2010: -
Outlook: -
Like Nishikori, he used to train at the Bollettieri's with funds from the Masaaki Morida Tennis Foundation. But he didn't join the academy's elite group like Kei did.
He is currently ranked #15 in the ITF junior ranking.

Other young players to note include Hiroyasu Ehara (b. 1991), who was runner-up to Jason Kubler at last year's Super World Junior championship; and 15-year old Yuki Muramatsu (b. 1994), who is currently training at the Bollettieri's and is funded by the Morita foundation. He's already very tall for a Japanese kid.

The thing about Japanese players who train in Japan is that many tennis courts in Japan are synthetic grass called omni courts, which is good for recreational players but hampers development of those aspiring to be a pro because such courts are only used at tournaments in
Japan and some parts in Australia. I think there should also be more clay courts in this country.


Also supporting Rafael Nadal, Kei Nishikori, Lleyton Hewitt
David Ferrer, Andy Murray, Juan Martin Del Potro, Nikolay Davydenko, David Nalbandian
Goran Ivanisevic and Marat Safin
#3 Ferrero Tard
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