Watch Out Roger Federer, Here Comes Jan

By Meera Dolasia on November 12, 2007

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5-year old Jan Silva can barely see over the net, but he already has an amazing one-handed backstroke. Dubbed as the Tiger Woods of Tennis, Jan is being heralded the future of American Tennis.

Jan's love for the game began as a baby, while watching world tennis matches. He started hitting foam balls and tennis balls by the time he was one. Jan's babysitter would practice tennis with him every day, and show him photos of champions until he knew them all.  By the time he was two he was a big fan of James Blake (currently ranked #14 in the world), and insisted on watching his game over and over. He started to emulate James Blake's strokes, especially his backstroke.

By the age of three, Jan started playing imaginary games with himself, against a glass sliding door. He would even pretend to wipe his "sweaty" face in between shots. 

When he turned four, he was invited to be a guest at a Pacific Life ATP Tournament in Indian Wells, California.  There he impressed legendary tennis player Jimmy Conners so much, that Jimmy asked Jan's parents permission to include Jan in his instructional tennis video.

While here, he also caught the eye of 2006 Australian Open finalist, Marcos Baghdatis, and his coach Guillaume Peyre, who invited him to train at the Mouratoglou Tennis Academy in France .

The Mouratoglou Academy is the best junior tennis training facility in the world and Jan currently resides there with his family.  Jan is the youngest player enrolled at this highly elite academy, which enrolls only a few of the world's best junior tennis players. 

Watch out Roger Federrer - here comes Jan! To watch this amazing kid in action, click below:

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  • ILoveTennisTuesday, March 3, 2015 at 6:17 am
    He is awesome!
    • zoiee
      zoieeFriday, February 13, 2015 at 6:52 am
      That is so cool of how a little boy can play base ball for how little he Is.I wonder how long did it take him to learn how to play base ball like how old was he when he learned?
      • bigmelo
        bigmeloThursday, February 12, 2015 at 6:16 pm
        That's really cool! I'm a mediocre tennis player, but I'd be willing to bet that he'd crush me! (not literally... :D)
        • Tennis ChampThursday, February 12, 2015 at 3:41 pm
          I play tennis just saying there is one REALLY small part that he is missing and he is doing wrong. BUT JUST SAYING HE IS REALLY GOOD
          • AWSunday, February 1, 2015 at 10:05 am
            • AWSunday, February 1, 2015 at 10:04 am
              umm Thats um AWSOME 5 year old😱
              • onion
                onionSunday, January 18, 2015 at 2:15 pm
                • lollipopTuesday, January 13, 2015 at 9:44 am
                  tennis rules when it comes to left handers
                  • cheetahluver
                    cheetahluverTuesday, December 30, 2014 at 7:50 pm
                    Awww thats so cool! I play tennis and its sooo hard. :)
                    • tutorialsbya
                      tutorialsbyaThursday, February 12, 2015 at 6:18 pm
                      I know right.
                      • bigmelo
                        bigmeloThursday, February 12, 2015 at 6:16 pm
                        Me too! It's really fun, isn't it?
                        • happypug12
                          happypug12Wednesday, December 31, 2014 at 4:59 am
                          Hey, I play tennis, too! I'm way better at the forehand than the backhand. ; )
                          • bigmelo
                            bigmeloThursday, February 12, 2015 at 6:17 pm
                            That's really cool! :) People say I have a killer two-handed backhand, though.
                            • cheetahluver
                              cheetahluverSaturday, January 17, 2015 at 7:10 pm
                              Oh really, me too! I play with my brother and sister (who are like professionals) and every time they hit a ball to my backhand, I just hit it everywhere! And how does a 5 year old hit a one- handed backhand?? Its soooo impossible! :D
                              • bigmelo
                                bigmeloThursday, February 12, 2015 at 6:18 pm
                                I know, right? He must be incredibly strong!
                          • TatMonday, December 1, 2014 at 12:04 pm
                            That's amazing