Shelton Guaranteed To Become New American No. 1 After Fritz's Loss In Monte-Carlo

Shelton Guaranteed To Become New American No. 1 After Fritz's Loss In Monte-Carlo

by Jordan Reynolds

Ben Shelton's progress since the start of last season has been incredible, and he will be rewarded for his efforts by becoming the American No. 1.

The 21-year-old gained many points after an excellent tournament in Houston. Shelton outplayed Frances Tiafoe to win the title in Texas after a very impressive run from the No. 1 seed at the event.

Shelton's success was also notable for another reason. It was his first title on clay. He may have had a home advantage in Houston, but that is still a very impressive achievement from him.

This is particularly true because Shelton has said that he had never played on clay or grass until last year. That means he needed to adapt his style to the high-bouncing clay courts, which he managed to do very successfully.

Shelton's triumph in Houston means he is currently very close to Taylor Fritz in the rankings. But another result on the same day as Shelton's final in Houston means he will overtake Fritz in the rankings next Monday on April 15th.

The Monte-Carlo Masters began on Sunday, with Fritz's match against Lorenzo Musetti the biggest contest taking place that day. But Fritz was comprehensively beaten by Musetti after a very impressive performance from the Italian.

Fritz reached the semifinal last year in Monte-Carlo. This meant he was defending a very high number of points. The loss to Musetti means he loses those points, and he will drop to at least No. 14 in the rankings when they come out next Monday.

Shelton will rise ahead of his compatriot. If no one overtakes him, it'll be a new career-high ranking for the 21-year-old, giving yet another example of the exceptional progress he has made in his short time on the ATP Tour.

The entertaining American will hope for further clay court success in the coming months to boost his ranking even further.


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