Taylor Townsend rises to No. 1 junior in the world (39947)
Taylor Townsend rises to No. 1 junior in the world (39946)

Taylor Townsend, a 16-year-old from Stockbridge, Ga., who trains full-time at the USTA Training Center Headquarters in Boca Raton, Fla., became the top-ranked junior in the International Tennis Foundation (ITF) World Junior Rankings for players 18 and younger on Monday. She is the first American girl to earn the ranking since the ITF combined singles and doubles rankings in 2004.

Donald Young was the last American to reach No. 1 in the boys’ rankings, in 2005. Coincidentally, Young’s parents were Townsend’s first tennis coaches.

In January, Townsend swept the girls’ singles and doubles titles at the Australian Open, becoming the first American to sweep the junior singles and doubles titles at a Grand Slam event since Lindsay Davenport at the 1992 U.S. Open.

Townsend captured the prestigious Easter Bowl title earlier this month in Rancho Mirage, Calif., where she also reached the doubles final. She holds a 19-2 singles record in ITF World Junior competition in 2012.

Townsend is representing the United States this week at the North/Central American and Caribbean championships for the Junior Fed Cup by BNP Paribas in Merida, Mexico. The team is coached by USTA Lead National Coach Kathy Rinaldi, who works with Townsend in Boca Raton.