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Shelton Meets Giron, Paul & Isner Could Collide In Delray Beach

Alcaraz to face Fognini or Djere on ATP Tour return in Buenos Aires
February 11, 2023
Ben Shelton is at a career-high No. 41 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings.
Lintao Zhang/Getty Images
Ben Shelton is at a career-high No. 41 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings. By ATP Staff

Seeded for the first time at an ATP Tour event, #NextGenATP American Ben Shelton will not be guaranteed all the home support when he steps out for his first-round clash at next week’s Delray Beach Open.

The 20-year-old Shelton has been drawn against countryman Marcos Giron at the hard-court ATP 250 event in Florida, where he is the eighth seed. If the Australian Open quarter-finalist Shelton wins, he could face another more-experienced American in the second round in 2017 champion Jack Sock, while fourth seed Miomir Kecmanovic is a potential quarter-final opponent.

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Joining Shelton in the bottom half of the draw in southern Florida are Tommy Paul and John Isner. The pair are seeded to meet in the quarter-finals, but Australian Open semi-finalist and second seed Paul will first focus on a second-round clash against Jordan Thompson or Denis Kudla. The seventh-seeded Isner will take on a qualifier to start his campaign.

In-form Americans also feature in the top half of the draw, where top seed Taylor Fritz could meet J.J. Wolf in the quarter-finals. Both are playing in the Dallas semi-finals this weekend — if either player reaches the same stage in Delray Beach next week, potential opponents there include third seed Denis Shapovalov and fifth seed Yoshihito Nishioka.

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Fognini Or Djere First Up For Alcaraz On Buenos Aires Clay
At the Argentina Open in Buenos Aires, Carlos Alcaraz makes his ATP Tour return after missing three months due to injury. The 19-year-old, who became the youngest No. 1 in Pepperstone ATP Rankings history last September after lifting his maiden Grand Slam trophy at the US Open, will meet Fabio Fognini or Laslo Djere on his tournament debut.

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The Spaniard’s other rivals in the top half of the draw at the clay-court ATP 250 include a trio of seeded Argentines. Sixth seed Sebastian Baez is a potential quarter-final opponent should Alcaraz make it that far, while a semi-final run could pit the top seed against Diego Schwartzman or Francisco Cerundolo.

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Second seed Cameron Norrie is making his main draw debut in the Argentine capital, where he opens against Federico Coria or Facundo Diaz Acosta in the bottom half of the draw. Seventh seed Alex Molcan meets former World No. 3 Dominic Thiem in an opening-round highlight, with third seed Lorenzo Musetti a potential quarter-final opponent for both Molcan and Thiem.

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