ATP Tour Official Tournament

Fritz successfully defends Delray Beach title

19 February 2024 By ATP Staff
Tokyo Take-Off! Shapovalov Serves Past Johnson
Top seed has won six consecutive finals


Taylor Fritz faced plenty of obstacles at the Delray Beach Open — wind, rain and close friend Tommy Paul among them. But nothing was able to stop the top seed from successfully defending his trophy.

Fritz defeated Paul 6-2, 6-3 on Monday to become just the second player in tournament history to win the event two years in a row, joining Jason Stoltenberg, who accomplished the feat in 1996 and 1997. The final was delayed by a day due to rain and it was windy throughout the week, but Fritz persevered.

"I had a long list of things I needed to do well, but I think a lot of that went out the window when we realised the conditions for the match, [that it was] going to be so windy," Fritz said. "On both sides, I had different ideas of what I wanted to do because [I was] just limited with the wind. I tried to serve as best I could, which it got me out of some trouble. I started to find it at the end. But it's incredibly tough to play, do what you want to do when it's windy like this.”

The champion has now won six consecutive ATP Tour finals dating back to the start of the 2022 season. This is the first time he has successfully defended a title, and he did it without losing a set.

The finalists arrived on Stadium Court tied at 2-2 in their Lexus ATP Head2Head series. But Fritz was in control for almost the entirety of their clash. 

At 3-3 in the second set, Paul spent more than 15 minutes trying to break Fritz’s serve. But Fritz held firm as he did throughout the match. He saved all seven break points he faced in the encounter according to Infosys ATP Stats. 

The top seed then broke Paul’s serve in the next game and held to love to clinch the championship.

“I think there were some questions about how I was physically feeling,” Fritz said. “I didn't play one of the rubbers at Davis Cup. I wasn't feeling amazing after Australia, so it's great to come here and feel like I'm moving and physically I'm definitely there and can keep playing.

“I don't need to take any time off to recover and mentally, it was tough conditions, especially today. I kind of just powered through it. All the pressure was on me this week defending the title and I was able to get through it.”

Paul was trying to win a title for the second consecutive week after triumphing at last week's Dallas Open. The 26-year-old has won seven of his past eight matches.

"He won the break points and I didn't win the break points. That was pretty much the difference," Paul said. "I think I came out with maybe a little too much energy inside and not letting it out. So it maybe looked like I was a little flat, but I definitely wasn't on the inside."

Did You Know?
In the eight matches Fritz has won in Delray Beach during his two title runs, the American has lost just one set. That came in last year's final against Miomir Kecmanovic.