‘I’m not playing a match here without him’: Tommy Paul’s US Open superfan is back

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NEW YORK — American Tommy Paul reached the fourth round at the US Open for the first time in his career on Friday with a 6-1, 6-0, 3-6, 6-3 victory over Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

And while the win could be attributed to his stellar play that he’s showcased all season (just ask Carlos Alcaraz) or his newfound surge of confidence, it could also very well be because of his lucky charm.

That would be a young superfan from Brooklyn named Eddy. During Paul’s third-round match against Roman Safiullin at Louis Armstrong Stadium, Eddy was seated courtside and was vocal throughout the match with cheers and even some tips for the 26-year-old Paul.

“He wanted to be in my ear the whole match,” Paul said on Wednesday. “It was actually really fun every time I went over there. He was encouraging me, I mean, damn near coaching me.”

Paul ran over to him at the end of the match and presented him with a shirt and hug.

So naturally Paul had to invite him back to Friday’s match. “I told him, like, ‘Dude, you have to come to the next one. Get in contact with me, message me on Instagram or whatever and we’ll get it hooked up.'”

Making his debut on Arthur Ashe Stadium on Friday, and with Eddy seated courtside yet again, Paul took control early and, despite Davidovich Fokina raising his level, held on for the win.

Eddy could be seen, and heard, throughout cheering on his favorite player. During his on-court interview after the match, Paul was asked if he would be inviting Eddy back for the next match. He wasted no time in responding: “Absolutely,” he said. “I’m not playing a match here without him.”

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