MatchPlay 120: Where are they now?
By now, we’ve told you all about the MatchPlay 120 exhibition series we ran in collaboration with Topnotch Management during the pandemic break from the ATP/WTA tours. It was a 10+ week series of professional tennis from multiple locations around the US, streamed globally. With several MatchPlay 120 players taking the court today and a number of players booking spots in the third round of the US Open, it’s clear that the MatchPlay series was not just a fun way to watch pro players battle it out, but a serious factor in the training and preparation of players coming into NY.
MatchPlay competitors at the Open
Whether it was 16 year-old Katrina Scott announcing herself and winning her first tour-level match, Ernesto Escobedo making the most of it with a last-minute spot in the draw, Brandon Nakashima taking center stage—and a set—against Zverev, Stevie Johnson upsetting John Isner, Marcos Giron cracking the Top 100, or Shelby Rogers making the fourth round, the MatchPlay players came in hot, and many are still going strong.
In addition to the players who joined our MatchPlay event taking the courts today at the biggest tennis event in the world, and there’s one player already into the third round, rising American star JJ Wolf, winner of the MatchPlay 120 event with the best overall record, and who we want to help you get to know better.
Player spotlight: JJ Wolf
Originally from Cincinnati, JJ went to Ohio State University where he was the No. 1 ranked NCAA player in the country prior to turning pro and signing with Topnotch Management.
Over the past two years, JJ has won four Challenger Tour titles and saw his ranking climb inside the top 200 at the start of the year. Coming off a solid run through qualifying last week at the Western & Southern and already winning two matches here in NY at the Open, JJ is knocking on the door of the top 100 and doing it in style.
Along with booking a date with Daniil Medvedev on Saturday, JJ has also earned some attention for the flavor of his approach to his first grand slam wins. JJ lives and trains in Columbus with Tour coach David Kass at Kass Tennis Academy, and he’s become a huge fan of the Columbus Blue Jackets, the local NHL team. A few days ago JJ received a Blue Jackets jersey with his name on it, and he’s barely taken it off around the grounds of the Open. When he has, it’s been to show off his frosted mullet and stylish Lotto clothes, earning JJ some fun attention.
While at the Open, JJ has been supportive of Katrina Scott, who also trains at Kass Tennis Academy in Columbus and made a mark at the Open herself.
We look forward to JJ taking the big stage against 2019 finalist and third seed Medvedev on September 5th, first on Arthur Ashe at noon.
Photo: Peter Staples