Ben Shelton Press Conference | 2023 US Open SemifinalSep 10, 2023
Yeah, I think the two weeks as a whole were a good run for me. Many of you know the positives to take with you into the rest of the year, and looking ahead to next year, it was a lot of fun playing my final. Grand Slam of the year here and doing it well and in front of the American crowd was pretty special for me and yeah, it wasn't the result I wanted in today's match. A few things to be disappointed about and the outcome, but a lot. of positive things to take too um and uh yeah, I'm really looking forward to getting back to work and doing well again, congratulations once again on a great two week run thank you tremendous name and affiliation, please be economical with your time.
When Chris returns, congratulations on your own chrisado with the US Open talking about taking the positives. I'm wondering if you can explain a little bit about what you can learn and how you can grow from the experience of achieving it. the semi-finals and of course today's experience against one of the best to ever play the sport, yeah, I think I learned a lot about myself, these two weeks, knowing how deep I can go, how deep I can go. , you know what I can do. I can do it competitively on the tennis court because I think it's a very mental sport.
I think that's a very important aspect and you know, I found a place where I can operate and still be calm and clear. mind, but be a fierce competitor and, uh, uh, know the guy that I'm playing with at the same time and you really know, I say this a lot with people on my team, but be a dog, have a dog. mentality, so I was pretty happy with the way I competed throughout the tournament Matt, yeah, hey, Ben Matt voted me for the New York Times. What do I mean? What was your perception of what was happening in the third set when you came in? that and turned it into a battle and then when it was over, I'm curious if you saw what he did with your gesture and what you thought about it, yeah, I mean, with the roof closed there, it was a lot of noise, I mean, very strong and You know, being playing against the number two player in the world and having so many people like me shouting, you know my name, it was a really cool atmosphere and you could see some of the momentum changing and in the third set I had a couple of breaks , so it was fun to be a part of that match and obviously it's hard not to get that set at the end of the set, but I mean, yeah, the American crowd really brought it to the table and responded. your second question you know uh yeah I didn't see it until after the game um and you know I don't like it when I'm on social media and I see people telling me how I can celebrate or not celebrate you know I think if you win the game you deserve to do whatever you want .
You know, growing up, I always learned that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so I don't know what to say about that, Willie Weinburn. from ESPN you talked about what you learned in general from this whole experience, how was today? What did you learn from Novak Djokovic and about Novak Djokovic? Yeah, you know, I learned that he's a guy who can compete at the highest level. Know? similar mentality to mine on the court with how he wants to chase you and be aggressive and show his emotions and I think it was really cool to see that matchup for the first time and I'm looking forward to getting it.
Again, okay David, I just wanted when you had walked onto the court with certain expectations of what it would be like to face Novak Djokovic that you've been watching on TV for many, many years, was it different? um, I don't know if it was different. I mean, I tried to go into the game with a very
openmind, you know, it's like when I watched it on TV, it was like I was a little kid, you know, who maybe wasn't even playing tennis yet or was playing a little bit. a little bit of tennis, but I played it for fun and I think I'm a completely different person now than I was then, so honestly, when I walked on the court I didn't expect anything, so you know, the tape I've seen of his last few matches here and I came into the game like I was, you know, playing against any other player, Cindy, uh, Ben.
Cindy Schmerler, also from the New York Times, you're leaving here and going to Vancouver for the Laver Cup. Can? She talks about how important it is that you were chosen for this high-level team and what your expectations are. Yes. I am very excited for the opportunity to play in the Laver Cup. Do you know when? when the ad first came out i saw all these comments on instagram oh why did you choose it? to show people that maybe I deserve to be on the team or the people who said I didn't know, they were proven wrong and I had a pretty good career here and I'm happy about that.
Hopefully, I was able to pass a few people wrong, okay, and your expectations, I mean, I'm pretty excited to have a team atmosphere. You know, I love those kinds of competitions. First, you know, the team tournament. I'll be a part of since I left university, so all the positive thoughts go into the work cup and I'll be, you know, just as excited and excited as I was here in Vancouver. David, I'm sorry, I said David Ava Wallace. Washington Post Um Ben, you had so many firsts this year, obviously it was your first year on tour and I know you're... your year's not over, but I'm wondering in what ways you felt like you grew this year. maybe a couple of things that stand out just in terms of being a tennis player and a professional now, yeah, I definitely learned a lot of things, you know, the list could go on and on, going to so many different countries that you know and still playing. different surfaces and just being exposed to different things.
I would say the most important thing I learned is that it is shaping me as a person as we speak. Do you know the influence that professional athletes have in this scenario? I know that tennis is a great sport, a world sport. It's a little crazy for me the first time I landed in Portugal for my first tournament in Europe. You know there were people at the game yelling my name or they knew who I was. That was a little hard for me to believe, but I think it definitely made me think a little bit more about how I act on the court, what message you know I'm giving and in my interviews, the things that I say and, uh, because I think it's very helpful and I think a lot of people really listen to what you say and watch what you do Kurt Kurt Streeter of The New York Times the strength of your game is your serve you're facing today you're facing probably the best returner in history and you were throwing some bombs and he kept retrieving them and retrieving them.
I wonder what that feels like, it's probably a little different than other returners and also if I learned anything about your maybe your return is facing it, yeah, um, I don't know if I felt very different with the way I was returning the ball in terms of, you know, pace or location, but he definitely did a great job of, you know, percentage. of balls that he returned to the court and yes, when you enter them you know that he is a great returner and a great defender and, honestly, what I was most happy about this week is that, for the most part, I did not have my highest level in the serve, you know, against Karatev, I had a really good serve day and in the third round, but other than that, I had another gear or I have another gear that I can go to in terms of serving and, you know, I don't really I was able to find it, you know, in the last three games, but what stood out to me the most was how I was able to go toe-to-toe with these guys from the ground and they were all like, oh, you know.
Ben is a server, but in the neutral rallies I felt pretty comfortable playing against the last four guys I've played with, they are very high level baseliners, excellent groundstrokes and I felt comfortable staying in a rally with them, um, playing no-pass points, but going deep on points from the ground and also at the net, so I was pleased with the way I was able to play some pretty complete tennis this week. I didn't feel like I was just a player. surf bot and get free points on my service, but I was endorsing Howard, hey, Ben Howard fenrich with the Associated Press, how would you describe the difference in what you saw on the other side of the net versus maybe other better players that you know?
I've played, yeah, I think Novak has a little more fire than other guys I've played with. You can see the competitive spirit that you know oozes from them. and uh he's like that for almost the entire game, he's pretty focused and it's funny because a lot of the things that I saw in myself this week about how he was trying to be on the court competitively and just shoot at times was something that also I saw in him and I think that's maybe something a little different than some of the other top players I faced. I wouldn't say all of them, but some I only have time for two more.
Craig Bill Ben Craig Abram nine Australia what's the biggest problem for you tonight tonight disappointment or this is a step Sorry a step in your career yeah I think everything is a step in your career eh win or lose I'm at a point where you know that losses don't break me because I have very long-term goals. As a team, we are very process oriented and know that this is part of the process. So there's a small part of it, obviously it's disappointment. I'm a competitor, I think I show it for the most part on the court and every loss hurts, you know, it cuts you, it cuts you a little bit, but if anything, this week motivated me more.
I feel like the last, the last. The time I had a great race in Australia I got quite complacent after it happened and I thought I would actually do something or get somewhere and you know, I had a tough couple of months after that and yeah, a lot of new experiences. on different continents and different surfaces, but I think after this race I have a totally different feeling going into the rest of this year and the beginning of 2024, where I'm really going to move forward now and it's like uh It kind of took me to a place where I'm going to work much harder.
Bill's last question. Bill Simon's inner tennis uh big congratulations so this is a tough question at the
conferencebut uh Taylor and Tommy Francis Chris you all have I had these just spectacular and I know you guys emphasize the importance of the process, but still, fans know that ultimately the sport is about getting to the top and getting through the mountain, so what do you think? What do you think? The obvious question: what do they think? For one of us Americans and for yourself, this is a question that I've answered often over the last few months or, you know, since I've been on tour and I'm not really sure what it's going to take.
I don't know if it will be me. I don't know if it will be someone else who breaks through. I always say that American tennis seems to be moving in a great direction. in the right direction, we have guys going far in the Slams and a lot of us here, three in the quarterfinals, we are advancing not only on the men's side but also on the women's side, Coco golf in the final, uh, Madison Keys, the semi-finalist. That's great, it's time to be an American in tennis. I wish you could know that you had a ball that says when and who the American will be the first man since Andy Roddick to win a Grand Slam, but unfortunately I don't.
I have that
If you have any copyright issue, please Contact