The loopy journey of an American participant in Melbourne

The primary stamp in his US passport, Ben Shelton, has been affixed in current weeks. The 89th participant on the planet has by no means been out of the US. Not even for a household trip.

There have been some loopy tales for the reason that inception of the Australian Open, however none fairly match the story of 20-year-old Shelton, who will play on Tuesday evening, or Tuesday evening by Wednesday, the quarter-finals of the primary main event of the season.

Subsequent, who will transfer into the highest 50 of the ATP rankings subsequent Monday.

The American was, as he put it, an strange participant as a teen. Due to this fact, his father Brian, himself a former fifty-five on the planet, noticed no level in having him go overseas, the place “he would lose, however he would study the identical issues.” [qu’aux États-Unis]”.

Chilton attended a standard public faculty, which made lengthy absences problematic.

However there, the typical gamer has come a good distance prior to now few years. He performed on the NCAA, American school circuit, for the Florida Gators. He’s nonetheless learning and taking some programs remotely in two weeks.

“Once I flew [en décembre]“I didn’t have any expectations,” he admitted at a information convention, after beating compatriot JJ Wolf, 67H After a battle that ended 6-7 (5), 6-2, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (4) and 6-2 on Monday.

“I knew it was going to be actually troublesome adjusting to Australia due to the exhaustion and jet lag. It was my first time overseas,” he mentioned, “I knew it was going to be sophisticated.

“I believe it helped me having no expectations, no stress to get good outcomes. I may simply be myself and play freely. I believe that was a giant a part of my success.”

victory over Rod

Chilton was already capable of give the opposite professionals within the ring some clues about his expertise final summer time. The 6’4″ teenager made it to the third spherical of the Cincinnati Masters, the place he was a visitor for the organizers.

The American beat the world quantity 2, Norwegian Casper Ruud.

A number of weeks later, Shilton tasted the glory of a significant event in New York, shedding a five-set scrimmage to Portugal’s Nuno Borges, then 104.H.

The American performed two occasions in Oceania earlier than the beginning of the Australian fortnight: the qualifiers in Adelaide, the place he misplaced within the first spherical, after which two important matches in Auckland (misplaced within the second spherical).

He desires his testimony

Mixed with jet lag and the almost 9,500km that separated him for the primary time from his residence nation, these final two outcomes didn’t imply Chilton would have such a powerful outbreak in Melbourne.

After the third spherical victory over Australian Alexei Popyrin, 113H world, informed the younger participant to pinch himself to ensure he wasn’t dreaming.

However no, Shelton isn’t dreaming. The pleasant younger man can be considerably all the way down to earth. As a result of even when he beats compatriot Tommy Paul, 35Hwithin the quarters, and even when he wins the title subsequent Sunday, he’ll nonetheless take his finance programs on the college.

“I actually need to graduate,” he famous.

“However this complete week is outstanding, smile. I really feel actually good.”