This year's Next Gen ATP Finals will be held in Jeddah. It marks the first formal ATP event in Saudi Arabia after longstanding rumors of the country moving into tennis.
They have invested a lot in sports recently, and tennis is the latest sport on their radar. It was always going to come because tennis has a long history in the Persian Gulf, so it was only a matter of time.
The ambitions for hosting a big event are high, but for now, the Next Gen ATP Finals will suffice. It's like an audition for the country to show whether they can handle it.
Shelton is one of the players that earned a spot at the event due to his amazing year, which included a maiden trophy in Japan as well as a Grand Slam semi-final at the US Open. However, there are rumors that Shelton might actually miss the event.
After his recent exit from the Paris Masters Shelton posted on social media where he looked back on his year. In his post, the American included one very interesting line, which said "see you Down Under," suggesting that his next tournament will be in Australia.
"Hard to find words to describe the season I had in my first year out on tour. So here are some of the people I got to share it with that made it special. See y’all down under."
However, the only way Australia is his next stop is if he skips the Next Gen ATP Finals. Skipping the event would be a bit unusual because it has a pretty unique format, which isn't that taxing on the body and pays out a decent amount.
On the other hand, taking a long break between now and next season would be beneficial for Shelton to really prepare well for next year.
The event doesn't offer any points, so perhaps Shelton is looking at it and thinking that skipping would be wiser. We'll see in a few weeks.