Black History Month Profile:
Hurricane Tyra Black
Arthur Kapetanakis | February 15, 2018
In celebration of Black History Month, USTA.com is taking a look at several talented, young African-American players who are following in the footsteps of pioneering players like Althea Gibson, Arthur Ashe and the Williams sisters and seem ready to make their own mark in tennis. Here is a look at Hurricane Tyra Black.
At the age of 16, Hurricane Tyra Black has already appeared in five junior Grand Slam tournaments after making her debut at the 2015 US Open. Earlier that year, she captured her first ITF 18-and-under junior title in Barbados soon after her 14th birthday. She cracked the Top 40 in the ITF junior rankings for the first time in January, and she will look to continue her ascent in 2018 with an eye on the WTA Tour. Here's more on Hurricane.
Residence: Boca Raton, Fla.
Current ITF World Junior Ranking: 55
- Black made her junior Grand Slam debut at the 2015 US Open via a main-draw wild card for both singles and doubles. ADVERTISEMENT In 2017, she was a main-draw competitior at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open. Black also played singles and doubles in Australia in 2018. She has one junior Slam win to date, a doubles victory at the 2017 Australian Open with American Jimena Rodriguez-Benito.
- The talented teen started 2018 with a career-high ITF ranking of 38 and has won six ITF junior singles titles – three each in 2015 and 2016 – to go with a pair of doubles crowns. Her 2017 campaign was highlighted by a run to the Easter Bowl quarterfinals and a semifinal appearance at the USTA International Spring Championships. Black was also a doubles semifinalist at both events.
- At the age of 13 in 2014, Black notched her first ITF junior win in her first opportunity, as a wild card at the ITF Jamaica Junior International Tournament in Kingston. Two years later, she would return to win the same tournament without dropping a set. Black has a family connection to Jamaica, as her father, Sylvester, represented the nation in Davis Cup play.
- She is the younger sister of Tornado Alicia Black, the former junior No. 3 and 2013 US Open girls' finalist. After a brief run on the pro tour, Tornado's career was derailed by a major hip injury. Since then, she has worked as a tennis coach to support her sister's career, and she launched a GoFundMe campaign in September 2017 to raise money for hip surgery in the hopes of getting back on the court.
- Hurricane paired with 2017 US Open girls' finalist, 13-year-old Cori Gauff, in doubles at four recent tournaments, including the 2018 Aussie Open and the 2017 Orange Bowl. Black has fond memories of the Orange Bowl, having won the girls’ 12s singles title at the prestigious event in 2013.