Melanie Jennings Oudin (born September 23, 1991) is a retired American tennis player and former world junior No. 2. She was a member of the American Fed Cup team from 2009 to 2011 and winner of the 2011 US Open mixed doubles title, with fellow American player Jack Sock.
As a 17-year-old in the middle of 2009, Oudin reached the round of 16 of the Wimbledon Championships, followed by a quarterfinal at the US Open six weeks later. She reached a career-high ranking of world No. 31 in April 2010.
Oudin retired from professional tour on August 18, 2017, citing numerous health issues and injuries.
Oudin, a Marietta, Georgia native, has a twin sister, Katherine, and a younger sister, Christina. Introduced to the sport at the age of seven alongside sister Katherine, it was clear Melanie had a gift. As Melanie continued to improve, her time spent on the court increased as well. In seventh grade, Melanie made the decision to homeschool, giving her more time on the practice courts and an opportunity to play more tournaments. In an article with Atlanta Magazine Oudin said, "If I was going to homeschool, I was going to try to go pro for sure". While the decision proved to be very beneficial for her career, Oudin admits envying her twin sister's experiences at a regular school. She says her idol is Justine Henin because "she proved you don't have to be tall to win things." Her grandmother inspired her and her sister to play tennis when she gave them racquets and lessons when they were young.
2008–09: Breakthrough in WTA, US Open quarterfinal, and top-50 ranking
Oudin turned professional in February 2008. In April 2008, she received a wild card at the WTA tournament in Miami where she lost in the first round to Tathiana Garbin in three sets. In August, Oudin received a wild card into her first Grand Slam main draw at the US Open. She was defeated by Australian Jessica Moore 7–6, 7–6.
In October that year, Oudin participated in the Bell Challenge in Quebec City. In the first round, she defeated third seed Sybille Bammer. In the second round, she defeated Olga Puchkova in two sets. Reaching her first WTA quarterfinal, she was defeated by sixth seed Bethanie Mattek.
Oudin began 2009 by qualifying for the main draw of the Australian Open. She was then defeated in the first round by Akgul Amanmuradova in straight sets.
At the 2009 Wimbledon Championships, Oudin entered as a qualifier. She defeated No. 29 Sybille Bammer in three sets in the first round and Yaroslava Shvedova in three sets in the second. Oudin defeated also world No. 6 Jelena Janković but lost to Agnieszka Radwańska in the fourth round.
At the US Open, Oudin entered as a wild card. In her first-round match, she easily defeated Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6–1, 6–2. In the second round, she stunned fourth-seeded Elena Dementieva in her Arthur Ashe Stadium debut. Then in the third round, she defeated a resurgent Maria Sharapova. At 17 years of age, Oudin reached the fourth round of a major event for the second consecutive time. In the fourth round, she played another Russian, 13th-seeded Nadia Petrova. She defeated Petrova to reach the quarterfinals of the event. She became the youngest woman since Serena Williams in 1999 to reach the quarterfinals at the US Open, and the youngest since Sharapova to reach the quarterfinals at a major. Her Cinderella story ended when ninth-seeded Caroline Wozniacki defeated her 6–2, 6–2. A standing ovation occurred when Oudin was leaving the court. After the US Open, Oudin's ranking rose into the top 50, her first appearance there.
2010: Steady form
At the Australian Open, Oudin was defeated by Alla Kudryavtseva in the first round.
After rallying from a set and 1–3 down, Oudin defeated Ágnes Szávay to reach her first semifinal of a WTA Tour event at the Open GdF Suez in Paris. She then fell in three sets to world No. 7 Elena Dementieva, in a rematch of the US Open second round. At the Cellular South Cup in Memphis, Oudin was the second seed. She lost in the quarterfinals to Sofia Arvidsson. At the French Open, Oudin made an early exit by losing to Anabel Medina Garrigues in the first round. At Wimbledon, Oudin reached the second round, before losing to Jarmila Groth. Oudin reached the second round at the US Open, before losing to Alona Bondarenko.
2011: Singles downfall, mixed-doubles Grand Slam title
In January, she obtained an invitation to play at the Hong Kong Tennis Classic with compatriots Venus Williams and John McEnroe. At Hobart, Oudin was defeated in the first round by fifth seed Klára Zakopalová 6–3, 7–6. In the first round of the Australian Open, she lost to Klára Zakopalová 1–6, 6–3, 1–6.
In the Fed Cup tie against Belgium, Oudin lost her first rubber to Kim Clijsters 0–6, 4–6. In her final rubber, she was defeated by Yanina Wickmayer 6–2, 6–0. Belgium reached the semifinals at the Fed Cup defeating the USA 4–1. Oudin got her first win of the year at the Open GdF Suez, where she beat Vera Dushevina in the first round 7–5, 5–7, 6–2. In the second round, Oudin lost to eighth seed Dominika Cibulková of Slovakia. Having reached the semifinals the year before, Oudin's ranking dropped from No. 61 to No. 72. Oudin's next tournament was the Cellular South Cup in Memphis. Seeded third, she won her first-round match against Anastasia Pivovarova 6–4, 6–0. In the second round, she faced Evgeniya Rodina, only to lose 1–6, 5–7. Oudin was unable to defend her quarterfinal points from last year and therefore saw her ranking fall from No. 72 to No. 81. At the Abierto Mexicano Telcel, she retired from her first-round match against qualifier Lesia Tsurenko. Ranked 82 at the Monterrey Open, Oudin won her first-round match over fellow American Vania King 6–4, 6–1. She was defeated in the second round by second seed and eventual champion Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Ranked 84 at the BNP Paribas Open, Oudin won her first-round match over Elena Vesnina. She was eliminated in the second round by 23rd seed Yanina Wickmayer. Moving on to the Sony Ericsson Open, Oudin started the tournament well with a first-round win over Julia Görges. She was defeated in the second round by 29th seed Daniela Hantuchová 6–1, 6–3.
Oudin began her clay-court season at the Family Circle Cup. She lost in the first round to Tamira Paszek. In the 2011 Fed Cup World Group Play-offs tie versus Germany, Oudin lost both of her rubbers to Julia Görges and Andrea Petkovic. Germany defeated the USA 5–0. As a result, the USA was out of the World Group for the first time. Ranked 93 at the Grand Prix SAR La Princesse Lalla Meryem, Oudin upset third seed Lourdes Domínguez Lino in the first round 4–6, 6–1, 6–2. She reached the quarterfinals when her second round opponent, Polona Hercog, withdrew due to an ankle injury. In the quarterfinals, Oudin lost to eventual champion Alberta Brianti. At the Estoril Open, Oudin lost in the first round to qualifier and fellow American Sloane Stephens 2–6, 1–6. Competing in her final tournament before the French Open at the Internationaux de Strasbourg, Oudin was defeated in the first round by seventh seed Anabel Medina Garrigues 6–3, 6–1. Ranked 88 at the French Open, Oudin lost in the first round to fifth seed and defending champion Francesca Schiavone 2–6, 0–6.
Oudin started her grass court season at the Aegon Trophy. Seeded fourth, she lost in the second round to Sloane Stephens . At the e-Boks Sony Ericsson Open, a tournament that is not on grass, Oudin was defeated in the first round by Michaëlla Krajicek. Playing qualifying at the Aegon International, Oudin lost in the final round of qualifying to Zheng Jie 1–6, 4–6. Ranked 87 at the Wimbledon Championships, Oudin was defeated in the first round by 18th seed Ana Ivanovic 6–0, 6–1.
As the top seed at the Fifth Third Bank Tennis Championships, Oudin was defeated in the first round by Chanel Simmonds. Oudin started her US Open Series by competing at the first edition of the Citi Open. She lost in the first round to third seed Tamira Paszek. At the Mercury Insurance Open, Oudin was crushed in the first round by Elena Baltacha 6–0, 6–1. Oudin lost in the first round of qualifying at the Rogers Cup and the Western & Southern Open to fifth seed Bojana Jovanovski 4–6, 2–6 and 15th seed Kateryna Bondarenko 1–6, 4–6. In her next tournament, Oudin received a wild-card entry into the singles main draw at the first edition of the Texas Tennis Open. In the first round, she was up against lucky loser Akgul Amanmuradova. Oudin was leading 7–6, 1–0 when her opponent retired due to a lower back injury. In the second round, she lost to qualifier Angelique Kerber 3–6, 2–6. Ranked 113 at the US Open, Oudin lost in the first round to qualifier Romina Oprandi. However, in mixed doubles, she and Jack Sock captured the mixed doubles title defeating the eighth seeded Argentine pairing of Gisela Dulko and Eduardo Schwank in the final.
At the Challenge Bell, Oudin was defeated in the first round by Andrea Hlaváčková in straight sets. Seeded seventh at the Coleman Vision Tennis Championships, Oudin lost in the second round to eventual champion Regina Kulikova. Playing at the Lexus of Las Vegas Open, Oudin fell in the first round to Sesil Karatantcheva.
Oudin played her final tournament of the year at the USTA Tennis Classic of Troy. Seeded fifth, she lost in the first round to Karatantcheva 1–6, 3–6.
Oudin ended the year ranked 139.
2012: Inconsistency, 1st WTA singles title
At the beginning of the season, Oudin lost in the first round of qualifying at the Australian Open to Laura Robson.
Oudin qualified for the Family Circle Cup losing in the first round to 10th seed Medina Garrigues. On April 29, she won the 50k Boyd Tinsley Women's Clay Court Classic defeating second seed and fellow American Irina Falconi in the final. She was awarded the USTA French Open Wild Card an account of her performance in the USTA Pro Circuit. At the French Open, Oudin drew Johanna Larsson of Sweden in the first round and won 6–3, 6–3. It was her first win ever at the French Open. In the second round, she lost to 21st seed and eventual finalist Sara Errani in straight sets.
Oudin began her grass-court season at the Aegon Trophy. After qualifying for the main draw, Oudin lost in the first round to Heather Watson. Next, Oudin competed at the Aegon Classic. She qualified for the main draw beating eighth seed Bibiane Schoofs and 16th seed Gail Brodsky. In the main draw, Oudin advanced to her firfst WTA Tour final defeating 10th seed Sorana Cîrstea, qualifier Michelle Larcher De Brito, Elena Vesnina, Irina Falconi, and eighth seed Ekaterina Makarova. The tournament was filled with rain delays and Oudin had to cope with the difficulty of coming off and on the court. She then defeated fifth seed Jelena Janković in the final to win her first WTA title. Winning the tournament bumped up her ranking from 208 to 122. Her performance earned her a wild card at Wimbledon. At Wimbledon, she was given one of seven wild-card entries into the main draw. In the first round, she lost to world No. 69 Tímea Babos of Hungary in three sets.
At the US Open, No. 107 ranked Oudin was unseeded and lost to 15th seed Lucie Šafářová of the Czech Republic in straight sets. In the women's doubles, she also lost in the first round teaming up with Grace Min.
With the 2012 season coming to a close, Oudin played several tournaments on the ITF circuit. At the National Bank Challenger Saguenay 50k in Canada, she advanced to the semifinals before losing to Eugenie Bouchard 2–6, 2–6. At the John Newcombe Women's Pro Challenge in New Braunfels, Texas, she defeated wild card Victoria Duval in the first round. With wins over Ulrikke Eikeri and Madison Keys, she made it to the final where she defeated Mariana Duque 6–1, 6–1. In this tournament, Oudin didn't drop a set.
In 2013, Oudin played in the Australian Open where she lost in the first round of qualifying to Laura Robson in straight sets. At the French Open, she won her first-round match over Tamira Paszek, before losing in the second round to Zheng Jie in straight sets. At Wimbledon, she lost in the first round to Michelle Larcher de Brito. Oudin did not play in the main draw of the US Open, losing in the first round of qualifying to Elena Baltacha.
Oudin failed to qualify for any Grand Slam tournament in 2014. In singles, her best result was reaching the final of an ITF event; in doubles she won one tournament with Jan Abaza.
In 2015, she did not play in any tournament until Wimbledon qualifying. There, she won her first match against Akgul Amanmuradova, before a straight-set loss to Wang Yafan in the second round.
In 2016, Oudin played mainly on the ITF circuit. Exceptions were the qualifying tournaments of the Charleston Open (lost in the first round), the French Open (reached the second round), and the US Open (reached the second round).
Oudin played singles in the United States' Fed Cup tie against Argentina in February 2009, losing her first match against Gisela Dulko, but winning the second match against Betina Jozami in three sets.
In the 2010 Fed Cup, Oudin led the US to a 4–1 victory over France by defeating Pauline Parmentier and Julie Coin. Against Russia, Oudin then defeated Alla Kudryavtseva in her first singles match, while losing to Elena Dementieva in her second match. Her team still advanced to the final in San Diego. Contrary to expectations, lower ranked CoCo Vandeweghe was chosen over Oudin for the first singles match against Francesca Schiavone. After the US team lost both matches on the first day, Oudin replaced Bethanie Mattek-Sands for the third singles match against Schiavone and won 6–3, 6–1. This kept her team in contention, but proved futile since Vandeweghe lost the next match against Flavia Pennetta. In the 2011 Fed Cup World Group tie against Belgium, Oudin lost both her singles matches against Kim Clijsters and Yanina Wickmayer. In April, she also lost her two matches in the 2011 Fed Cup World Group Play-offs where the US dropped out of the World Group for the first time since its formation in 1995.
Grand Slam finals
Mixed doubles: 1 (1–0)
|Winner||2011||US Open||Hard||Jack Sock|| Gisela Dulko
|7–6, 4–6, [10–8]|
WTA career finals
Singles: 1 (1–0)
|Finals by surface|
|Winner — Legend (pre/post 2010)|
|Grand Slam tournaments (0–0)|
|Premier Mandatory & Premier 5 (0–0)|
|Finals by surface|
|Grand Slam tournaments (0–0)|
|Premier Mandatory & Premier 5 (0–0)|
|Winner||1.||June 18, 2012||Aegon Classic, Birmingham||Grass||Jelena Janković||6–4, 6–2|
Singles: 10 (6–4)
|Runner–up||February 25, 2008||Fort Walton Beach, United States||Clay||Barbora Strýcová||3–6, 7–5, 6–7|
|Winner||July 21, 2008||Lexington, United States||Hard||Carly Gullickson||6–4, 6–2|
|Winner||May 10, 2009||Indian Harbour Beach, United States||Clay||Laura Siegemund||7–5, 5–7, 6–2|
|Winner||May 17, 2009||Raleigh, United States||Clay||Lindsay Lee-Waters||6–1, 2–6, 6–4|
|Runner–up||November 14, 2010||Phoenix, United States||Hard||Varvara Lepchenko||3–6, 6–7|
|Winner||April 29, 2012||Charlottesville, United States||Clay||Irina Falconi||7–6, 3–6, 6–1|
|Winner||November 4, 2012||New Braunfels, United States||Hard||Mariana Duque||6–1, 6–1|
|Winner||September 29, 2013||Las Vegas, United States||Hard||CoCo Vandeweghe||5–7, 6–3, 6–3|
|Runner–up||July 14, 2014||Carson, United States||Hard||Nicole Gibbs||4–6, 4–6|
|Runner–up||September 17, 2016||Atlanta, United States||Hard||Elise Mertens||4–6, 2–6|
Doubles: 7 (2–5)
|Runner-up||July 21, 2008||Lexington, United States||Hard||Lindsay Lee-Waters|| Chan Chin-wei
|6–2, 2–6, [8–10]|
|Runner-up||September 25, 2011||Albuquerque, United States||Hard||Grace Min|| Alexa Glatch
|6–4, 3–6, [2–10]|
|Runner-up||October 2, 2011||Las Vegas, United States||Hard||Varvara Lepchenko|| Alexa Glatch
|Runner-up||September 22, 2013||Albuquerque, United States||Hard||Taylor Townsend|| Eleni Daniilidou
|Runner-up||November 1, 2013||Toronto, Canada||Hard (i)||Jessica Pegula|| Victoria Duval
|6–7, 6–2, [9–11]|
|Winner||September 15, 2014||Albuquerque, United States||Hard||Jan Abaza|| Nicole Melichar
|Winner||June 11, 2016||Surbiton, Great Britain||Grass||Sanaz Marand|| Robin Anderson
Grand Slam performance timelines