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TopCourt: #NextGenATP Champ Nakashima’s Razor-Sharp Returns

Few young stars on the ATP Tour made greater strides in 2022 than Brandon Nakashima.

The 21-year-old lifted his maiden ATP Tour title in his hometown of San Diego in September before going unbeaten in Milan to become the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals champion in November. Now inside the Top 50 of the Pepperstone ATP Rankings, Nakashima has established himself as one of the most consistent young players on Tour with his hard-hitting, versatile game.

Luckily, Nakashima is now an ambassador for TopCourt, giving fans the chance to find out more about the secrets behind his meteoric rise. They include not only his physical and technical approaches, but also the keys to his calm on-court demeanour that belies his tender age. Nakashima reveals how his mental discipline was honed during his time as a college player in the United States, and dives deeper into how it helped prepare him for his ATP Tour breakthrough.

Instruction: Nakashima’s dominant returning was key to his recent triumph in Milan, and the #NextGenATP American teams up with Serbian coach Dusan Vemic to dissect the fundamentals of ‘Ad Side’ returning. Nakashima and Vemic demonstrate good technique while also flagging some common mistakes to avoid when stepping into your shot.

Drills: The element of surprise should never be underestimated, and Nakashima shares the perfect drill for developing a good kick serve to catch your opponent off guard on the ad side. The service strategy Nakashima demonstrates can manoeuvre opponents off the court, giving you the chance to take charge of rallies as well as helping to increase your all-important first-serve percentage.

Follow Nakashima’s Tutorials at TopCourt.com.

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