American Men 'push Each Other' To Tennis Resurgence In Australia
Melbourne, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 25th Jan, 2023 ) :American men's tennis is witnessing a resurgence with a unlikely trio all making a Grand Slam quarter-final for the first time since 2005, and they are thriving off each others success.
Ahead of the Australian Open, world number nine Taylor Fritz and 17th-ranked Frances Tiafoe were the Names on everyone's lips after they led the United States to glory in the inaugural mixed teams United Cup.
But it has been lesser-known players Ben Shelton, JJ Wolf, Sebastian Korda and Tommy Paul who have grabbed the spotlight in a sign of renewed strength and depth in the men's game.
Two of them, former college standouts Shelton and Wolf, surged into the last 16 on their tournament debut, while Korda and the more experienced Paul have enjoyed their best Grand Slam ever.
"Absolutely. I think we see people that we've played our whole lives, kind of felt like we've been around the same level as them our whole lives, and we see them doing big things in big tournaments," said the 25-year-old all-court player. "We're like, 'OK, I can do that'.
"It's a good group coming up." The last time three American men reached a Grand Slam quarter-final was the 2005 US Open, led by Andre Agassi, James Blake and Robby Ginepri.
You need to go back 23 years for the feat at Melbourne Park, when Agassi, Pete Sampras and Chris Woodruff made the grade.
But with nine Americans now in the top 50, and Shelton and Wolf surging up the rankings, optimism is high that the glory years could be revisited.
Most of the them, who also include Jenson Brooksby, Reilly Opelka and Maxime Cressy, are 25 or under and just starting their careers.
"I think with how many great athletes coming out of States, it was just a matter of time," said Wolf, whose penetrating forehand took him into the last 16, where he was beaten by Shelton, a 20-year-old on his first trip outside the United States.
"Having a lot of Americans seeded and a lot of rivalries like that I think will be really good to push each other... It's good to feel like we've kind of got a team out here."Consistency can elusive at the top, and John Isner, one of the older cohort inside the top 50, said last year it would not need an American to win a Grand Slam tournament to be able to say that men's tennis in his country was back.