Jannik Sinner tops Ben Shelton in Indian Wells, extends winning streak

Jannik Sinner has won all 15 matches in 2024

by Jovica Ilic
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Jannik Sinner tops Ben Shelton in Indian Wells, extends winning streak
© Matthew Stockman / Staff - Getty Images Sport

World no. 3 Jannik Sinner will compete in his ninth Masters 1000 quarter-final in Indian Wells, the first since Toronto last August. Jannik faced Ben Shelton in the fourth round and claimed a 7-6, 6-1 triumph in an hour and 38 minutes, extending his 2024 winning streak to 15!

Sinner followed Carlos Alcaraz into the last eight, battling with his Spanish rival for the world no.2 spot. Shelton fought well in the opener, erasing a break deficit in the last moment and keeping Sinner on the court for 67 minutes.

The Australian Open champion prevailed in the tie break and broke the rival's resistance in set number two with a double break on his tally. Jannik denied four out of five break points and tamed Ben's booming initial shot easily, reducing the American to four aces and seizing three out of nine break chances.

Jannik Sinner, Indian Wells 2024© Matthew Stockman / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Sinner had the upper hand in the shortest rallies up to four strokes, taming his strokes nicely and earning the win in that segment.

Shelton claimed the first game of the encounter after deuce with a service winner, and Sinner leveled the score at 1-1 with a hold at 15 after an unreturned serve. A left-hander moved 2-1 in front with another powerful serve and stepped in on the return in the next one, forcing Sinner's mistake and creating break chances.

Jannik stayed calm and defended four with bold hitting, wrapping up the game with a service winner and avoiding an early setback. The Italian found the rhythm on the return at 2-2, generating a break point and missing it after the American's volley winner at the net.

Jannik Sinner, Indian Wells 2024© Matthew Stockman / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Jannik Sinner defeated Ben Shelton in straight sets in Indian Wells.

However, Jannik earned another break opportunity after a lucky net cord backhand winner and seized it to open a 3-2 gap following the rival's costly double fault.

World no. 3 cemented the lead with a hold at 15 in game six after a forced error, and the home player grabbed the next one with a forehand crosscourt winner, remaining within one break deficit. Sinner closed the eighth game at love after a forced error, moving closer to clinching the opener.

Ben served to stay in the set at 3-5 and fired a service winner to extend the battle and his chances. The Italian served for the opener in game ten and created a set point with an unreturned serve.

Ben Shelton, Indian Wells 2024© Matthew Stockman / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Shelton denied it after a lucky net cord return and a forehand winner, earning a break chance and seizing it to level the score at 5-5 and add more drama.

The American played a loose drop shot in the 11th game, offering the Italian three break chances. Ben attacked and denied them, forcing Jannik's mistake with bold forehand strikes and producing a vital hold that sent him 6-5 in front.

World no. 3 served to stay in the set in game 12 and fired an ace for a hold at love, introducing a tie break and making a strong start after a great defense and Shelton's volley mistake. Jannik moved 2-0 up with a smash winner and landed an ace in the third point.

Shelton trailed 4-1 before pulling two mini-breaks back, returning to the positive side. Sinner claimed his third mini-break in the ninth point, opening a 5-4 gap and creating two set points with a service winner. The Australian Open champion seized the first with a smash winner, wrapping up the opener 7-6 after 67 minutes and gathering a massive boost.

Jannik held at love at the beginning of the second set when Ben missed a backhand and played well on the return in the next one. A left-hander missed a routine forehand and faced two break points. Shelton placed another easy forehand beyond the baseline, getting broken and sealing his fate in this encounter.

Sinner cemented the lead with a service winner in game three, forging a 3-0 advantage and sailing toward the win.

Jannik Sinner, Indian Wells 2024© Matthew Stockman / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Ben squandered a 40-15 lead in the fourth set, allowing Jannik to reach deuce with a backhand down the line winner.

The American netted a backhand and faced a break point, saving it with a forehand attack and a forced error. Shelton held after a couple of more deuces, reducing the deficit to 3-1 and remaining one break behind. Ben reached deuce on the return in the fifth game with a powerful forehand return before spraying two groundstroke errors, allowing Jannik to move 4-1 in front.

The American sprayed a backhand mistake in the sixth game, offering world no. 3 two break points. Jannik seized the second with a forehand winner, opening a 5-1 advantage and serving for victory in game seven. The Italian started the game with a service winner and landed another for three match points.

Sinner seized the first with a powerful serve, sealing the deal and setting the quarter-final clash against Jiri Lehecka.

Jannik Sinner Ben Shelton Indian Wells
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