Ben Shelton of the U.S. celebrates after defeating Nicolas Jarry of Chile in their second round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2023. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Former Gator Ben Shelton Advances in Australian Open 2023

The University of Florida’s former men’s tennis star Ben Shelton, 20, has advanced to the third round of the Australian Open on Thursday after defeating Nicolas Jarry. This is the first time that Shelton, whose the 2022 NCAA Singles champion, has competed abroad as a professional tennis player.

The Australian Open’s 2023 main draw began on Monday in Melbourne, Australia, and will conclude on Sunday.

Shelton’s Gator Days

Former Gator and Gainesville, Florida, native Ben Shelton is making his mark abroad as he advances in the year’s first tennis Grand Slam.

This comes as no surprise considering his astounding collegiate stats and titles while competing at the University of Florida.

During his career as a Gator, Shelton earned multiple titles including being named the 2022 Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Player of the Year, the 2022 SEC Player of the year, and 2022 SEC Tournament MVP, among his many other titles. Shelton’s notable career propelled him to cut his collegiate career two years early and head to the professional league.

Serving the Pros

Ben Shelton’s professional career is off to a great start as he has been breaking barriers at the Australian Open 2023.

https://twitter.com/GatorsMTN/status/1615937580859817991?s=20&t=p0bNLBE2tzSVMn46fve76g

Shelton’s first match took place on Tuesday, January 17, 2023 where he defeated  Zhang Zhizhen of China after five sets. Shelton finished the match 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (10-4) to advance to the next round. In the second round of the Australian Open 2023, Shelton faced off against Chilean tennis player Nicolas Jarry. The 20-year-old tennis standout defeated his opponent 7-6 (3), 7-6 (3), 7-5. This straight-set victory has set Shelton up to advance in the third round of the Grand Slam.

Looking Ahead

The third round of the Australian Open 2023 is set to take place on Saturday. Ben Shelton will take on Alexei Popyrin in a highly anticipated matchup. Shelton will enter the match ranked 89th while the Popyrin will enter the match ranked 113th.

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