IMG Academy’s Naoki Nakagawa wins U.S. Open Juniors doubles title

IMG Academy’s Naoki Nakagawa wins U.S. Open Juniors doubles title | IMG Academy

September 08, 2014     by: Johnny Esfeller
Naoki Nakagawa

On Saturday evening, IMG Academy’s Naoki Nakagawa, partnering with Australia’s Omar Jasika, won the U.S. Open Junior Doubles tournament. Nakagawa and Jasika were the sixth-seed in the tournament, and faced the Brazilian duo of Joao Menezes and Rafael Matos in the final, winning 6-3, 7-6.

Nakagawa, like Kei Nishikori, arrived at IMG Academy at the age of 14 through the Masaaki Morita Tennis Fund, started by the former Sony executive to fund the education and training of promising Japanese tennis players. Nakagawa, now 17-years old, is currently ranked #11 in the ITF rankings after reaching a career-high of #9 in May. The win was Nakagawa’s first-career junior Grand Slam title. In May, Nakagawa won the ITF Grade 1 Citta Da Santa Croce singles championship, where he defeated his U.S. Open opponent, Joao Menezes in straight sets in the final, 6-3, 7-5.

Nakagawa was preceded in the day by Kei Nishikori, who defeated world #1 ranked Novak Djokovic in the U.S. Open semifinal in four sets, 6-4, 1-6, 7-6, 6-3. Following a weather delay, Croatia’s Marin Cilic (ATP #16) defeated Switzerland’s Roger Federer, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 to earn a spot in the final opposite Nishikori. Nishikori will make his bid at history to become the first Asian male player to win a Grand Slam title at 5:00 p.m., Monday, Sept. 8 in Flushing, N.Y.

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