Tag Archives: Alex Bogomolov Jr.

The Steady Rise and Return of Alex Bogomolov Jr.

19 Oct

Alex Bogomolov Jr. Kremlin CupThis time last year, Alex “Bogie” Bogomolov Jr. was ranked outside the Top 200 and playing challenger events in such glamorous places as Charlottesville, Knoxville, and Champaign. You may actually remember that we highlighted Alex among others last year in Jockeying for Position with his title in Champaign at the end of last year. Bogie built on that momentum and steadily climbed the rankings this year to a career-high #37 and finds himself seeded 5th at the Kremlin Cup, an ATP 250 event in Moscow.

Alex has always played for the USA, but rumors are circling that the 28 year-old player born in Moscow is being courted to play Davis Cup for Russia. Although he is now the #4 American, Alex has never played for the USA Davis Cup team since there have always been so many Alex Bogomolov Jr. TattooAmerican players ranker higher. Russia currently has only one player ranked higher than Alex, and quite frankly #34 Mikhail Youzhny has really been dropping like a rock these days. This makes Alex that much more desirable for the Russian Davis Cup team. Not many besides TCW was paying Alex much attention last year, but what a difference a year makes.

And what a difference a few years make as Alex struggled through a doping suspension in 2005, a divorce from WTA pro Ashley Harkleroad in 2006, and career-ending career-changing wrist surgery in 2008. He gave up the pro circuit for a while and became the Director of Tennis at Gotham Tennis Academy on Long Island and in the Bronx. His son Maddox was his motivation to return to the tour, and I highly recommend reading ESPN’s How Love Lifted Bogomolov Jr.’s Game article if you missed it. You can also watch this from his sponsor Athletic DNA to learn more about the rise, fall, and return of Bogie.

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Alex is taking advantage of his new stature in the game, and his relatively easy draw this week is a good example of  how Bogie is now reaping the rewards from the last couple of years of grinding through challengers and quallies. He is in the quarters already with 3-set wins over lower-ranked Dusan Lajovic and Mikhail Kukushkin. This is quite different from a year ago where he would need to play 2 or 3 rounds of quallies before facing a top seed in the first round. And now he is one of those top seeds.

The draw gets a lot tougher this week in Moscow as he faces #16 Victor Troicki, but Bogie has proved this year that he is capable of beating Top 20 players with wins over Chela, Tsonga, and Murray. We may need to do a new “Jockeying for Position” article as it looks like his 2011 success could earn him a seeding for the Grand Slams in 2012.