Tommy Paul puts an end to Ben Shelton’s incredible journey

While twenty-year-old American Ben Shelton had never played tennis outside the United States before January 2023, his magnificent career in Melbourne came to an end on Wednesday, when he was beaten in the quarter-finals. d the Australian Open by his compatriot Tommy Paul (7-6 [6]6-3, 5-7, 6-4 in 3h06).

Until the kick-off of the last Wimbledon, Tommy Paul had only won six Grand Slam matches. It is a format that did not suit him. In three tricks, he has just added ten successes! After his round of 16 at Wimbledon and his third round at the US Open, he is squarely in the semi-finals of the Australian Open.

More complete than Shelton, who relies 80% of his game on his serve (24 aces in this match, 85 over the whole tournament), and will absolutely have to improve his return and his backhand to hope to go very high in the hierarchy, Paul could or should have finished in straight sets as he served 7-6, 6-3, 4-3.

Tommy Paul will be in the Top 20 on Monday

A less good shot on his side, a good jerk on the other and Shelton won an extension. Which he spoiled the start by hitting two double faults to get breaker entry. This time, Paul did not let go of his serve. Here he is in the semi-finals for the first time in his Grand Slam career, with the assurance of winning next Monday the best ranking of his career, in the World Top 20.

He will face Friday the winner of the last quarter-final of this Australian Open, which will oppose Wednesday, in night session, Novak Djokovic to Andrey Rublev. “In answering interviews yesterday, when people asked me what it was like to be in the quarters, I said that “half”, it sounded better, so I am super happyjoked Paul on the court. It was a game without a lot of rhythm, it was not easy and I’m sure Ben will win many more. And I can’t believe I’m where I am! »

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