Affectionately nicknamed, “Junior Mint,” Jack Munro, at only 14 years old, is the youngest 5.0 player in pickleball today. A ninth-grader at Thousand Oaks High School, Munro started playing the sport competitively in 2015 when he captured a gold medal in Junior Men’s Singles 11-14 at the USAPA National Championships. He would go on to defend his title two more years in the same bracket and last year at the game’s premier event won gold in Mixed Doubles 19-49 with partner and former Wimbledon Doubles Champion Joanne Russell. He also took home a silver medal from Nationals in Junior Doubles.
Munro was first introduced to the sport by his father. “My Dad plays tennis and pickleball. I played baseball until I hurt my shoulder in 2014 and couldn’t play the game anymore. I couldn’t play tennis so I started playing pickleball with him and the rest is history.”
Always one determined to improve his game, Munro practices almost 20 hours a week while in school with an “amped” up schedule once summertime hits. “I finish up with my homework first, then I go out for 3-4 hours, two or three days a week and then on the weekends I find more time to play, usually from 7 am – Noon.”
This year on the pickleball court, Munro won gold in Men’s 5.0 Doubles at the Tustin Winter Classic, silver in Men’s 5.0 Doubles at the Andalusia Pickleball Challenge and a silver medal in the SoCal Summer Slam in 5.0 Mixed Doubles.
The future is certainly shining bright for Junior Mint.