CiCi Bellis

article - CiCi Bellis

Catherine CartanCiCiBellis (born April 8, 1999) is an American professional tennis player. In early 2018, she was the second youngest player in the top 100 of the WTA rankings and has a career-high of No. 35, which she achieved in August 2017. Bellis is known for winning a match at the 2014 US Open as a 15 year old against a top-20 opponent, making her the youngest match-winner at the US Open since 1996.

American tennis player

CiCi Bellis

Bellis at the 2015 Carlsbad Classic
Full name Catherine Cartan Bellis
Country (sports)  United States
Residence Lake Nona, Florida
Born (1999-04-08) April 8, 1999 (age 22)
San Francisco, California
Height 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)
Turned pro September 13, 2016[1]
Coach Tom Gutteridge
Prize money US$ 1,431,153
Career record 138–67 (67.3%)
Career titles 1 WTA 125K, 7 ITF
Highest ranking No. 35 (14 August 2017)
Current ranking No. 177 (30 August 2021)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 3R (2020)
French Open 3R (2017)
Wimbledon 1R (2017)
US Open 3R (2016)
Career record 20–19 (51.3%)
Career titles 2 ITF
Highest ranking No. 149 (17 July 2017)
Current ranking No. 1335 (30 August 2021)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open 1R (2018)
Wimbledon QF (2017)
US Open 1R (2016, 2017)
Last updated on: 13 September 2021.

Bellis’s biggest professional title came at the Hawaii Tennis Open in 2016, a WTA 125K event. She has also won seven singles titles and two doubles titles on the ITF Women’s Circuit. Bellis had an accomplished junior season the same year she played in her first US Open, finishing the 2014 season as the ITF Junior World Champion for holding the year-end world No. 1 junior ranking. She also won the USTA National Junior Championship that year at 15 to become the youngest winner of the event since Lindsay Davenport in 1991.

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CiCi was born in San Francisco to Gordon and Lori Bellis, and grew up in Hillsborough and Atherton in northern California. CiCi started playing tennis at age three, but only choose to focus on it over soccer when she was ten years old. When she was young, she was coached by former top-100 player Monique Javer. As a child, Bellis aspired to go to college at Stanford, but ended up declining a scholarship to turn pro due to her success as a teenager. Her tennis idol is Kim Clijsters.[2][3][4][5]

Bellis in 2013

As a junior in the United States, Bellis won five USTA National Junior Singles Championships and was ranked No. 1 in the G18s in April, 2014.

Bellis began playing on the ITF Junior Circuit in late 2012 and mostly participated in low-level Grade-4 tournaments through the end of 2013. Her biggest triumph in the 2013 season was winning Les Petits As in France, a prestigious tournament for juniors between 12 and 14 years old.

In 2014, Bellis played only Grade-B1, Grade-1, and Grade-A tournaments, the three highest levels on the junior circuit. She had an impressive start to the year by reaching the final at her first five events, winning four of them. Specifically, she won the Copa del Café in Costa Rica, the USTA International Spring Championships and the Easter Bowl in the United States, and the Trofeo Bonfiglio in Italy.[6] She followed up this success by also reaching the French Open doubles final with Markéta Vondroušová, which they lost in a match tiebreak. In contrast, Bellis struggled at the three Grand Slam singles events she entered that year, with her best result being a third round appearance at the French Open. Nonetheless, she took over the No. 1 ITF junior rankings in early September on the strength of those four titles in the first half of the season.

In August 2014, Bellis won the USTA Girls 18s National Championship, defeating Tornado Alicia Black in the final. At the age of 15 years and four months, she became the youngest winner of the event since Lindsay Davenport in 1991. With the victory, she also earned a wildcard into the main draw of the US Open.[2][7] Bellis and Black were then both selected to represent the United States at the Junior Fed Cup along with Sofia Kenin. The trio won the title and Bellis went undefeated in seven matches. Later in the year, she also reached the semifinals at the Orange Bowl. Bellis finished the season as only the second American since 1982 to be No. 1 in the year-end ITF girls’ junior rankings, earning her the title of 2014 ITF World Champion.[8]

Bellis closed out her junior career by reaching the semifinals at the 2015 French Open, her best singles result at a Grand Slam tournament and the only junior event she played that year.[9]

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