Tommy Paul reached his first Grand Slam semifinal and ended the surprising run of Ben Shelton by winning their all-American matchup at the Australian Open 7-6 (6), 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 on Wednesday.
Paul, a 25-year-old from New Jersey, is the first man from his country to make it to the final four at Melbourne Park since Andy Roddick in 2009. Roddick was also the last man from the US to win a Grand Slam singles championship, at the US Open 20 years ago.
The 35th-ranked Paul was a star as a junior, taking the 2015 title at the French Open and getting to the final at Flushing Meadows that year. As a pro, he owns one tour-level title, at Stockholm in 2021 and, until this week, had made it as far as the fourth round at just one Grand Slam tournament — at Wimbledon a year ago.
His semifinal opponent will be 21-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic or No. 5 seed Andrey Rublev. Djokovic entered their match on Wednesday night with a 43-10 career record in major quarterfinals; Rublev’s mark at that stage was 0-6.
The other men’s semifinal Friday is No. 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas against No. 18 Karen Khachanov.