Ben Shelton Unlikely To Follow Idols Rafael Nadal and Andre Agassi’s Footsteps For Gaining Top Tennis Honor in 2024

Ben Shelton Unlikely To Follow Idols Rafael Nadal and Andre Agassi’s Footsteps For Gaining Top Tennis Honor in 2024

American tennis fans will be extremely pleased with the performance that Ben Shelton put up at the Indian Wells 2024. Despite a fairly difficult schedule, after defeating Jakub Mensik and Francisco Cerundolo, Shelton has found himself in the fourth round with Jannik Sinner as his opponent. While the news of entering the Round of 16 is certainly one to celebrate, enthusiasts won’t appreciate that the 21-year-old is planning on skipping the Olympics 2024 Games in Paris for the ATP 250 & 500 tournaments.

Following Ben Shelton’s opening-round win against Jakub Mensik, the American World No. 16 revealed his plans for the summer. While several other top-ranked players in the world will be present in Paris, France to participate in the Olympics 2024 Games, Shelton will prepare for the US Open 2024 by participating in tour-level events in the United States.

“Definitely thought about it a lot. I’d say now I’m leaning towards not going this year if I were to make it,” Shelton said, as reported by Express.

“I think it’s tough in the tennis schedule this year. I’ll be in Europe for two months leading up to Wimbledon, and then after, you know, I want to prepare and really get ready for the US Open. So having to go back to Europe to play on clay, a different surface, you know, it kind of messes up a few lead-up tournaments to the US Open that I would play if I wasn’t playing the Olympics.”

For the singles event, the top 56 players in the world as of 10 June 2024 will qualify for the Olympics 2024. However, it is worth noting that only four players from each country will be allowed to participate.

The Olympics 2024 will take place from July 27th – August 4th. However, Shelton plans on playing in the Atlanta Open 2024 (ATP 250) and the Mubadala Citi DC Open 2024 (ATP 500) between 22- 28 July and 29 July – 4 August 2024.

Considering his fine form, Shelton will surely get a nod alongside Taylor Fritz, Tommy Paul, and Frances Tiafoe. With a couple of months still remaining for the southpaw to confirm his availability for the esteemed tournament, American fans will hope that the youngster reconsiders his decision regarding the same.

If Ben Shelton finalises not playing in the Olympics, it would be a massive controversy since for the United States, it is a competition of the highest national honor in world sport. In 1996, Andre Agassi created history by winning gold at the Atlanta Olympics.

With Andre Agassi being one of Ben Shelton’s idols, it could come as a huge surprise if the latter skips the Olympics. It would also mark a huge shift in players, even from tennis, not considering national duties as important as playing on the ATP Tour for more prize money and rankings. It would be interesting to see how another American patriot apart from Andre Agassi, John McEnroe would have to say about this.

Ben Shelton also idolises Rafael Nadal, a man extremely patriotic towards Spain. Nadal is the most decorated player ever from the European country, winning 2 Olympic golds as well as multiple Davis Cup titles for them. Players from other countries such as Andy Murray from Great Britain have also made a name for themselves due to playing for their country when the opportunity arises.

Who will Ben Shelton play in the Indian Wells 2024 Round of 16?

After having defeated Jakub Mensik and Francisco Cerundolo, Ben Shelton will go up against Jannik Sinner in the Round of 16.

While Shelton has been playing really well, the Australian Open 2024 winner is expected to defeat the American. Despite having a slightly easier tie, having defeated Thanasi Kokkinakis and Jan-Lennard Struff, the Italian has been playing significantly better than his upcoming opponent.

Related Articles