Just Who is Reilly Opelka?

Reilly Opelka. Think about that name for a second. Now you’ve thought about it you’re probably asking yourself “who?”. Don’t worry, however; there are probably a lot of people out there asking the exact same question. Let’s begin with the fact that he’s won Wimbledon. In fairness, it was a Wimbledon Juniors title and it was last year, but regardless of that this week Opelka is making big push on the ATP Tour.

In all seriousness, who is Reilly Opelka? He’s a right-handed 18-year-old American ranked #823 in the world–nothing to exactly shout about when you have the likes of fellow teenagers Borna Coric and Alexander Zverev, both a year older, ranked at #51 and #24, respectively. When you go under the surface, however, Opelka’s game isn’t that of an ordinary player; it’s one of a player who could go on to become a huge threat at the top of the game.

At 6’11” and possibly still growing, Opelka is the joint tallest tennis professional of all time, standing at the same height as Croatian Ivo Karlovic and one inch  taller than fellow American John Isner. This is what his game will be based around. Like the two players I just mentioned, they have the 2 biggest serves in the game and the youngster is no different. At the moment he can regularly serve in the mid 130mph range and as he develops the serve is only going to gain more speed and variety. Adding to that, Opelka has already shown that while his movement isn’t flawless, and never will be at that height, he is making big efforts to minimize the weaknesses of it.
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