American Fritz is a teenager in a hurry

Thu May 19, 2016 11:29am EDT
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By Martyn Herman

LONDON (Reuters) - So rapid has been American teenager Taylor Fritz's rise up the ATP rankings that setting targets has become futile exercise.

As he prepares for his first grand slam as an automatic entry at the French Open, the 18-year-old could be forgiven feeling a little giddy. But that is not his style.

A year ago he was ranked 821st and thought a place in the top 200 could be achievable by the end of 2015.

He smashed that, climbing to 174.

The top 100 looked a reasonable objective in 2016, now that's has been upgraded to top 50 after he reached 69th place by April, having become the youngest American to reach a Tour final since Michael Chang in 1989.

His run to the Memphis Open final, where he lost to Japan's former U.S. Open runner-up Kei Nishikori, made people sit up and take notice and led to predictions that he could be the player to fill the void left by Andy Roddick.

"Yeah, I have to keep setting new goals," the teenager who grew up watching Pete Sampras told Reuters.

"A year ago I would have thought it pretty crazy if you had told me I would be top 100, definitely would have been shocked.   Continued...

Mar 25, 2016; Key Biscayne, FL, USA; Taylor Fritz hits backhand against David Ferrer (not pictured) during day four of the Miami Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center.  Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports