Vukic rolling through historic season

Illinois tennis standout Aleks Vukic named Big Ten Player of the Week five times

CHAMPAIGN -- A trip home to Australia over Christmas break was the perfect measuring stick for Illinois junior Aleks Vukic.  He faced two Top 100 players in the world, losing both matches, but gained a shot of confidence in the process.

"It kind of told me where my level is at in comparison to those guys and kind of the really minute things I need to work on to get to that level and get where I want to be in the future," Vukic said.

The biggest thing Vukic learned?  His game is not far off from the guys playing tennis for a living.

"It's more the exposure to pro matches, which I think helps my game improve," said Vukic.  "Coming back here and playing these it helps me improve so it's more the development of playing those matches that helps my game the most."

Vukic has steadily improved throughout his college career.  He may have already turned pro by now had it not been for multiple wrist injuries that set him back.  Now healthy, he's a top 800 player in the World Rankings and the 35th best Aussie according to Tennis Australia.  Vukic won his program record fifth Big Ten player of the week award on Tuesday.  For his career, Vukic has won the award nine times. 

"He's really ready to make his mark and show Tennis Australia that he's ready for the next level so he will obviously do that this year, next summer and he's looking to raise some eyebrows there," Illinois head coach Brad Dancer said.


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