Ben Shelton serves up star power in US Open loss to Novak Djokovic

Ben Shelton serves up star power in US Open loss to Novak Djokovic

Despite losing to Novak Djokovic in the semifinals, American Ben Shelton, 20, exits the US Open as a star with a genuine possibility of breaking through the regular borders of tennis fandom.


NEW YORK — Men’s tennis is on the brink of something intriguing, and Ben Shelton is going to be part of it for a long time. 

You can feel it all over the premises at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center throughout the US Open, simply like you might this year at Wimbledon when another 20-year-old feeling called Carlos Alcaraz beat Novak Djokovic and took house his 2nd Grand Slam title. 

It is a various energy than what fans endedupbeing utilized to when Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal ruled the sport. Call it tennis for the TikTok generation, with highlights that appearance like NBA quick breaks, events straight out of WWE and athleticism that is going to push this sport to locations it has neverever been inthepast. 

Unlike Alcaraz, Shelton might not take down the legend in the US Open semifinals. Djokovic won by a comfy scoreline — 6-3, 6-2, 7-6 (7-4) — however it was not a comfy afternoon for the male who will play for his record-tying 24th Grand Slam title on Sunday. 

DJOKOVIC: Steals Shelton’s phone event after pounding 20-year-old at US Open

You might inform by the hangdog body language Djokovic brought around the court in the 3rd set as Shelton, unlike lotsof of the other young Americans who haveactually dealtwith a comparable scenario, declined to pay deference by bowing out meekly. Instead, Shelton kept shooting away, breaking Djokovic twotimes to get into a tiebreaker and mean-mugging after some of his winners like he was in the lead rather than 2 sets down. 

Djokovic plainly didn’t value it. After match point, he simulated Shelton’s “Call me” event, stepped to the internet and provided a much chillier handshake than you usually see. 

“I think if you win the match, you shouldhave to do whatever you desire,” Shelton stated. “As a kid growing up, I constantly foundout that replica is the sincerest kind of flattery, so that’s all I have to state about that.”

The kid from the University of Florida wasn’t allset to win this kind of match. But in terms of getting under Djokovic’s skin? He currently may be leading 5 in the world.

As it stands, Shelton exits the US Open as a star with a genuine opportunity of breaking through the regular borders of tennis fandom. It’s been 20 years consideringthat an American guy has won a Grand Slam — Andy Roddick at the 2003 US Open — and his run to the semifinals here in his veryfirst complete year as a expert recommends he may be the one to ultimately break the dryspell. 

But now that Shelton hasactually developed that he has the videogame to make this kind of run at a Grand Slam, he requires to invest the next year inbetween now and the next US Open doing something that has avoided him so far. 

He requires to start winning when the lights aren’t this brilliant. 

Shelton will leave the US Open ranked No. 19 in the world, however the exceptional thing is that almost all of his equity hasactually come through 2 competitions: This one and the Australian Open in January, where he took benefit of a soft draw and made a quarterfinal run.

Nobody needto take anything away from what he did in Australia; winning 4 matches was a amazing efficiency for somebody who had neverever even been outdoors the nation. But when Shelton invested the next 7 months havingahardtime to back it up in routine ATP Tour occasions, the outcome in Australia began to appearance like an outlier.

Nobody can state that about what Shelton did at the US Open.

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He played an outstanding set versus previous champ Dominic Thiem in the 2nd round priorto Thiem retired with an disease. In the 3rd round, he enforced his will on Aslan Karatsev, an enforcing physical specimen. In the 4th round, he quickly managed American Tommy Paul, who hadactually been one of the finest gamers of the summerseason tough court swing consistingof a win over Alcaraz.

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