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Paul books spot in the second ATP final of his career in Acapulco, defeating an exhausted Fritz
Tommy Paul edged out Taylor Fritz 6-3, 6-7 (2), 7-6 (2) on Friday after an exhausting battle
No 7 seed Tommy Paul moved into the final of the Mexican Open by edging out No 3 seed Taylor Fritz 6-3, 6-7 (2), 7-6 (2) after a 3h25 battle at the Princess Mundo Imperial in Acapulco on Friday – the longest match at the tournament, breaking the record three hours and 21 minutes set by Stefan Kozlov and Grigor Dimitrov last year.
Both player were exhausted at the end of the match. Fritz was seen vomiting in a basket at 6-5 in the third. He saved a match point at 6-3, 5-4 on Paul’s serve before leading 3-1 in the third set. Fritz will leave the Top 5 next week.
Paul, ranked No 23, will face the winner of the match between Dane Holger Rune, the No 4 seed, and Australian Alex De Minaur, the No 8 seed, next.
Sunday will be Paul’s second final on the Tour after his win in Stockholm in 2021. Paul will break the Top 20 again on Monday at the ATP rankings, whatever happens in the final. He achieved career-high No. 18 last month after becoming first American man to reach Australian Open semi-finals since Roddick in 2009.
Paul “Never gonna be easy against Fritz”
“It’s never gonna be easy against Fritz”, Paul said after the match. “He’s unreal. He doesn’t give you any points throughout the whole match. You feel like you have to work for everything… I think I got a little lucky we were both struggling (physically).”
In the previous rounds of the Acapulco Open, Tommy Paul defeated Ecuadorian Emilio Gomez (6-1, 7-6 (4)), Michael Mmoh (6-4, 2-2 ret.) and Mackenzie McDonald (6-2, 6-2).
Fritz won against John Isner (3-6, 6-3, 6-4), Canadian Denis Shapovalov (6-4, 6-4) and No 6 seed Frances Tiafoe (6-3, 6-4).