Ben Shelton

Ben Shelton is an American professional tennis player, who competes on the ATP Tour since 2022.

Date of Birth: 9 October 2002
Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Residence: Gainesville, Florida, United States
Height: 6'4" (193 cm)
Weight: 195 lbs (88 kg)
Plays: Left-Handed (two-handed backhand)
Turned Pro: 2022

Benjamin Todd Shelton, known professionally as Ben Shelton, was born on October 9, 2002, in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Shelton’s father, Bryan Shelton, was a former professional tennis player with a career-high ranking of No. 55. He also served as the men’s head tennis coach for the Florida Gators between 2012 – 2023, making the decision to step down from collegiate coaching and coach his son in a full-time capacity.

Shelton’s mother, Lisa Witsken Shelton, was also a former pro tennis player who played predominantly on the junior level, while his sister Emma also played college tennis in Florida. Despite hailing from a family with a rich tennis background, Ben Shelton grew up wanting to play American football.

However, his love for being a quarterback did not last long, as at the age of 12, Shelton began pursuing tennis. Shelton’s dream was to play in junior tennis tournaments all over the world, but he stuck to his father’s advice in developing to become the best college tennis player in the United States.

While majoring in finance at the University of Florida, Shelton shot to prominence playing college tennis. He helped the Gators win their first national championships, winning 10 of his 12 matches, including the decisive championship match. In 2021/2022, Shelton won the NCAA singles Championships and finished the year as No. 1 in the ITA rankings.

Before turning professional, Shelton would make his ATP debut at the 2022 Atlanta Open as a wild card. He won his first-round match against Ramkumar Ramanathan before losing to John Isner in three sets in the next round. Impressed by his cameo, the tournament organizers at the Cincinnati Masters handed him a wild card into his first ATP 1000 main draw.

Shelton would repay them with two huge wins over Lorenzo Sonego and Casper Ruud – the latter being his first over a Top 10 player. His campaign ended in the round of 16 against Cameron Norrie. Shelton made his Grand Slam main draw debut at the US Open in 2022 but lost to Nuno Borges in five sets in his opening match.

Undeterred by that defeat, he closed out the 2022 season strongly, winning three straight ATP Challenger titles in November. He won two finals in Charlottesville and Knoxville, beating compatriot Christopher Eubanks. In the third final, he defeated Aleksandar Vukic.

Shelton became the youngest player in ATP Challenger Tour history to win three titles in three weeks and would break the world’s Top 100 for the first time, peaking at No. 97. At the start of the 2023 season, Shelton had already turned professional, switching his business degree into a distance-learning course in order to focus on tennis.

Shelton played his first tournament outside U.S. soil in Adelaide, Australia, where he lost to James Duckworth in the qualifying rounds. But his first main draw match outside his home country did not wait long, as he would win on his Auckland debut against Sebastian Baez.

Shelton’s first Grand Slam outside his home country was the 2023 Australian Open, where he achieved a breakthrough by reaching the quarterfinals. Shelton played at the Roland Garros and Wimbledon too, but it was at the 2023 US Open where he recorded his best result in a Slam, reaching the semifinals. By dint of that run, he would make his Top 20 debut.

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