Sumit Nagal, 22, qualified for the US Open 2019 men’s singles and is facing Roger Federer in the first round Tuesday. This is Nagal’s first appearance at a senior Grand Slam. Having turned 22 earlier this month, he is the youngest Indian to qualify for a Grand Slam main draw in 25 years. Follow LIVE
Sumit Nagal has come a long way from his days of wandering on the sidelines of tournaments, hoping to get in. Born on August 16, 1997, Nagal won the 2015 Wimbledon boys’ doubles title with his Vietnamese partner Lý Hoàng Nam, defeating pair of Reilly Opelka and Akira Santillan in the final.
Nagal became the sixth Indian player to win a junior Grand Slam Title. He made his Davis Cup debut for India in the 2016 World Group Playoff tie against Spain in New Delhi.
Nagal has worked hard and earned his trip to Flushing Meadows. From starting the year ranked 361, he’s risen to a career-high 190 after a run of form that saw him make the semi-finals five times in seven consecutive Challenger events.
In 2008, Sumit was among the 14 youngsters selected in a programme sponsored by Apollo Tyres that aimed to develop an Indian Grand Slam winner in the next decade. It was at this event that Mahesh Bhupathi and Canadian coach Bobby Mahal spotted Sumit.
Sumit’s father credited his rise to doubles legend Mahesh Bhupathi. He said, “Bhupathi got Sumit in the tennis circuit by providing him the direction he required. Even after 10 years, he still is showing him the path.”
Sumit received his training under Bhupathi until 2011, and then moved to Canada. After three years in Canada, Sumit moved to Germany in 2014 to train under Argentine coach Mariano Delfino.