“I’m mad about this weekend,” Ben Shelton expresses bitter disappointment after a thrilling victory against Frances Tiafoe in Houston

Shelton defeated Tiafoe to win his first-ever clay court title on the ATP Tour and second of his career so far.

“I’m mad about this weekend,” Ben Shelton expresses bitter disappointment after a thrilling victory against Frances Tiafoe in Houston

Ben Shelton (Image via IMAGO)

Young gun Ben Shelton proves his mettle with a sensational title win in Houston. The Southpaw won his second career title and first on clay but not without being made to do the hard work. Up against defending champ Frances Tiafoe in the finals, the 21-year-old won the match 7-5, 4-6, 6-3.

It was his third three-set win from the four matches he played at the 250-rated tournament. Barring his quarter-final win over Brandon Nakashima, Shelton won all his matches in the deciding set. However, even after the title win, the American was disappointed with the tournament.

With sports lovers in the USA being spoiled with various sporting events, Shelton was no different. He has also been following the NCAA events and keeping a close eye on his compatriots, fighting hard for their college’s success.

As the women’s finals were scheduled on Sunday, 7th April, it coincided with the match between Shelton and Tiafoe. While he did not hint at which team he was supporting, he sure did mention being ‘mad’ about missing the finals between South Carolina and Iowa.

Only thing I’m mad about this weekend is that my final in Houston was at the same time as the SC IOWA game.
tweeted Ben Shelton

Having won his debut Tour title at the 2023 Japan Open, the ATP-500-rated hardcourt event, the wait for a second title had been long ongoing. But he has finally achieved it and also won his first Tour title on clay.

Ben Shelton set to become the highest-ranked American in the ATP rankings while Iowa suffers another finals heartbreak

Shelton sure did take home the title, but that wasn’t the case for Iowa. The Hawkeyes were in the finals for the second consecutive year but had to settle for the runners-up trophy yet again. The South Carolina Gamecocks won the finals 87-75 and finished their season with a perfect record of 38-0.

Ben Shelton and Caitlin Clark
(L) Ben Shelton, (R) Caitlin Clark of Iowa walks off after finals defeat to South Carolina (Images via IMAGO)

Iowa finished 34-5 as they fell short at the final hurdle for the second year running. But for their star player Caitlin Clark, it was another sensational performance as she’s dubbed to go down as one of the greatest NCAA players ever.

In what was her final career match at the NCAA level, she finished with 3951 career points. She also set a championship record of 18 points in the first quarter of the finals. It’s her misfortune that she failed to guide the Hawkeyes to the NCAA title, but her performances should not be overlooked.

As for Shelton, he now gets a week’s rest, as he didn’t sign up for the 2024 Monte-Carlo Masters alongside Tiafoe. However, with the first-round exit of Taylor Fritz at the Masters event, Shelton will overtake him to become the highest-ranked American man when the rankings are updated next week.

In case you missed it: