Frances Tiafoe becomes the first African-American man to reach the US Open semifinal since 1972
Frances Tiafoe just became the first African-American man to reach the semifinals of the US Open since the legendary Arthur Ashe in 1972.
Frances Tiafoe just made history on Wednesday after defeating Russian Andrey Rublev in the quarterfinals of the US Open, the ATP Grand Slam that takes place at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Queens, New York.
The American tennis player of Sierra Leonean descent became the first African-American to reach the semifinals of the US Open since the legendary Arthur Ashe in 1972.
“I love being able to show the world what I can do. I just want to go out there and try to give the fans what they want, which is for me to win,” Tiafoe said after beating Rublev.
Ashe won the first edition of the U.S Open in the open era, that of 1968, but due to his participation as an amateur, he was unable to collect the prize. The US Army lieutenant avoided going to the Vietnam War by participating in the tournament.
The US Open was established in 1881 as a singles and doubles competition. In 1887 the participation of women in singles was included, and in 1889 the doubles category was added. Since 1978, the tournament has been held at Flushing Meadows. Before being played on hard court, the US Open was played on grass and clay.
Last victorious American
Andy Roddick was the last American tennis player to win the US Open, when he beat Spanish Juan Carlos Ferrero in three sets in 2003. Since then, 74 majors have passed without an American winning them.
The last American to advance to the semifinals at a Grand Slam was John Isner at the 2018 edition of Wimbledon.