Taylor Fritz and Frances Tiafoe square off at the ATP 500 Acapulco

Taylor Fritz will take on Frances Tiafoe in Mexico
Taylor Fritz of the US reacts as he wins a point against Spain’s Rafael Nadal in a men’s singles quarterfinal match on day ten of the Wimbledon tennis championships in London, Wednesday, July 6, 2022. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Four Americans remain as the ATP 500 Acapulco tournament heads into the quarter-final stage; however, all eyes will be trained on the showdown between the top two Americans in the world Taylor Fritz and Frances Tiafoe. 

How to Watch:

  • Time:  8 p.m. ET (or later depending on prior matches)
  • Channel: Tennis Channel (or streaming at tennistreams.com)

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Heading into their matchup Fritz is ranked 5th in the world, a career-high for him, while Tiafoe is 16th. 

Despite a disappointing loss at the Dallas Open, Fritz has started the year strong, going 13-3 including a championship at the Delray Beach Open and wins over 10th-ranked Hubert Hurkacz, 12th-ranked Alexander Zverev, and 16th-ranked Matteo Berrettini

He advanced to the quarter-finals in Acapulco after surviving a three-set match in the first round against fellow American John Isner and then beating 30th-ranked Denis Shapovalov in straight sets in the second round. 

Tiafoe had an easier road to the quarter-finals, beating 34th-ranked Yoshihito Nishioka in the first round and then dispatching 41-year-old qualifier, and 1,035th-ranked player in the world Feliciano Lopez after Lopez shocked 26-year-old American Christopher Eubanks in the first round.

While his road in Acapulco was easier, Tiafoe has also had a strong start to 2023, going 10-2 but lacking the signature wins that Fritz has put together. The highest-ranked player Tiafoe has beaten so far this year is 23rd-ranked (at the time) Lorenzo Musetti, and Tiafoe was ousted in the third round of the Australian Open by 20th-ranked Karen Khachanov.  

A win over Fritz would be the first big win of 2023 for Tiafoe and could signal his ability to threaten for the right to be viewed as the top American male on tour.

However, in order to do that, he’ll need to overcome a rough history against his fellow countryman. 

So far in their careers on the ATP tour, Fritz leads their head-to-head series 5-1. Tiafoe’s only win was in their first meeting back at Indian Wells in 2016, and the two have only ever played on hard courts, which is what Acapulco is. 

While Fritz has won the last five meetings, each of the last four has been close. Three of those matches went to three sets (the full distance since none were at a Grand Slam) and their last match in Tokyo in 2022, which Fritz won in straight sets, he had to win tiebreakers in both sets. 

It should be an exciting showdown between two 25-year-olds who are hoping to take American tennis to the next level, but there is another contender elsewhere in the Acapulco draw. 

Earlier in the day, fellow 25-year-old American Tommy Paul, who’s currently ranked 21st in the world will take on fellow American Mackenzie McDonald. 

How to Watch:

  • Time: 4:30 p.m. ET
  • Channel: Tennis Channel (or streaming at tennistreams.com)

Paul is 10-3 in 2023, including a trip to the Australian Open semi-finals, where he lost to Novak Djokovic. However, Paul followed that up with a disappointing second-round loss at the Delray Beach Open against 113th-ranked Radu Albot, so he’ll be hoping to get back on track by taking out McDonald. 

The winner of those two matches will face each other in the semi-finals, which will ensure an all-American semi-final and that at least one American male will make the finals of the Acapulco Open.

Whoever comes through may have an early claim to be the best American male on the tour. 

For more tennis coverage like this Fritz and Tiafoe story, visit amNY Sports

Frances Tiafoe will take on Taylor Fritz in Mexico
Frances Tiafoe reacts after winning a tiebreaker against Andrey Rublev during the quarterfinals of the US Open.AP Photo/Seth Wenig