Jérôme Kym and Sebastianna Scilipoti are causing a sensation in the junior tournament of the US Open, both of which are in the semi-finals. Who are the two Swiss tennis hopes for the future?
Jérôme Kym – the youngest Swiss Davis Cup player of all time
The now 18-year-old from Aargau made headlines at a very young age. On February 2, 2019, Kym and Henri Laaksonen won doubles in the Davis Cup match between Switzerland and Russia at the tender age of 15. It was an incredible story back then. Because opposite him was not just anyone, but next to Yevgeny Donskoy (currently ATP 154) also today’s world number 7 Andrei Rublev.
Kym replaced Heinz Günthardt as the youngest Swiss Davis Cup player of all time and was already traded as the successor to Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka. But in retrospect, these advance praise was possibly a little too much for the almost two meter tall, but still very young talent from Möhlin. Kym began to stagnate, and there was also the Corona crisis – he fell behind Dominic Stricker, Leandro Riedi and Jeffrey von der Schulenburg in the hierarchy of top juniors.
Severin Lüthi’s criticism and the move to Kitzbühel
Davis Cup captain Severin Lüthi then even publicly criticized Kym. «Jérôme has potential, but a lot of problems in his game. He has to show that he has the passion to continue on this path, ”said Roger Federer’s coach a year ago opposite the «Aargauer Zeitung».
Kym seemed to take these words to heart, and shortly afterwards he began to reposition himself. Last autumn he decided to work with the Austrian Markus Hipfl, and since November the Fricktaler has been living and training in Kitzbühel.
“I’m glad I decided to take this step,” says Kym, who is currently number 1087 on the ATP world rankings. Because since then the talent has been on the up again with the grandiose serve (up to 230 kilometers per hour!). At the junior tournament in Wimbledon, Kym reached the quarter-finals in the summer, at the US Open he is now in the semi-finals.
Sebastianna Scilipoti – decided for tennis and against athletics
The semi-final qualification of 18-year-old Sebastianna Scilipoti can be described as a coup, as her quarter-final opponent Alexandra Eala from the Philippines was ranked significantly higher than her. Accordingly, the Geneva woman said to SRF: “I haven’t even realized that I’m in the semi-finals. Now of course I hope that it will continue like this. “
All the more so since not everything went as planned for Scilipoti this year. The fact that she can now finish her last year with the juniors, before the official transition to the professionals, makes her smile: “It makes me very proud.”
Mentally matured in Barcelona
Scilipoti found tennis through her father. “Back then I started in a small club in Geneva, when I was five I hit my first balls.” But in addition to tennis, little Sebastianna practiced other sports, including athletics. “When I made the selection for the Swiss junior tennis squad, I finally decided on tennis.”
She then spent a year in the Swiss Tennis National Competence Center in Biel, but then went to Barcelona for further training. “It was hard to leave the family, but it also matured me enormously mentally.”
The Swiss hope for the future also celebrated its greatest triumph to date near Barcelona. Last November she won the ITF tournament in Castell-Platja d’Aro, which is why she is currently 726th in the world rankings. But of course Sebastianna Scilipoti wants more: “My biggest dream is to be one of the best 20 players in the world.”