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Taylor Townsend, who practiced violin for two years, started playing right-handed for two years then switched to lefty. As a junior, she won the singles and doubles titles at 2012 Australian Open and became the first American to sweep both events at a junior Slam since Davenport in 1992. She would also become the first American to hold year-end No.1 junior world ranking since Gretchen Rush in 1982.
Townsend turned professional at end of 2012 season and made her WTA main draw debut as a wildcard at 2013 Indian Wells: in the first match, she posted her first Top 100 win over No.57 Hradecka. In 2013 she reached her maiden WTA doubles final, finishing as a runner-up in Washington D.C. (w/Bouchard, l. Aoyama/Dushevina).
The American cracked into the Top 100 on January 19, 2015 at No.99. In 2016 she reached her best result at Grand Slam level, the third round showing at Roland Garros (l. Svitolina).
She ended 2017 ranked No.105, three spots off career-best year-end finish of No.102 in 2014. Her season highlight included the third-round run in Miami after coming through qualifying, as she upset No.30 Vinci in the second-round before losing to No.7 Kuznetsova. That year she won three ITF titles in Sumter, Florence, and Waco.