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Rising star Tommy Paul aims high at the Delray Beach Open

Rising star Tommy Paul aims high at the Delray Beach Open

As the Delray Beach Open draws near, local fans will be pulling for Tommy Paul. The 26-year-old American tennis star resides in Boca Raton and will play the 2024 Delray Beach Open. For Paul, this isn't just another tournament; it's a homecoming.   

“We’ve literally watched Tommy grow up,” said Delray Beach Open Tournament Director Mark Baron. “We run the USTA Boys Clay Court National Championships, and he won the 16s and 18s in 2013 and 2014. He first played in the ATP 250 qualifying in 2016 ranked No. 249. Fast forward to this year, it will be his fifth time in the main draw and he’s ranked 13th in the world. We are so proud to have played a small role in his journey.”

Photo: Andrew Patron / Delray Beach Open.

In 2022, Paul reached the semifinal, his best finish, at the Delray Beach Open. Later that year he scored some big wins over world No. 3 Alexander Zverev, world No. 4 Carlos Alcaraz, and Grand Slam winners Rafael Nadal, Stan Wawrinka, and Marin Cilic.

At the beginning of 2023, Paul reached his first Grand Slam semifinal at the Australian Open notching another win over former world No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz. By October, Paul had achieved a career high No. 12 world ranking. Only one American player, Taylor Fritz, is currently ranked ahead of him.

Photo: Andrew Patron / Delray Beach Open.

Fritz also happens to be last year's Delray Beach Open champion. And he's back again this year. Fritz and Paul have been friends since their days playing junior tennis. Fritz is currently scheduled to play his first Delray Beach Open match on February 14th at 8pm. Paul is scheduled the following night at 8pm.

After Fritz won Indian Wells in 2022, Paul got pumped up about repping the next crop of American tennis hopefuls. "You see Fritz win a Masters 1000, and I think all of us we're all happy for him, but we're all like, 'OK, he did it. We can do that," he told the New York Times

Photo: Andrew Patron / Delray Beach Open.

It turns out Paul is at home playing tennis in Florida. At one point, he was roommates with fellow American player Reilly Opelka in Boca Raton. The two also lived at the USTA National Campus in Orlando training alongside Taylor Fritz and Frances Tiafoe — also playing at this year's DBO

"It's great that three of my really close friends all ended up making it to where we're at now together," Fritz told Town & Country about their squad.

Looking at past champions in Delray Beach reveals something intriguing. Opelka (2020), Tiafoe (2018), and Fritz (2023) have all won the Delray Beach Open.

Could Tommy Paul be next?


Written by Florida Tennis' Executive Editor and Publisher Matt Pressman. Top Photo: Andrew Patron / Delray Beach Open.

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