Tiafoe, Paul roll into 4th round with 4-set wins

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NEW YORK — Tenth-seeded American Frances Tiafoe is back in the fourth round of the US Open for the fourth straight year after beating No. 22 Adrian Mannarino of France 4-6, 6-2, 6-3, 7-6(6) on Friday in Louis Armstrong Stadium.

Tiafoe, who beat Rafael Nadal on his way to the semifinals last year, said his whole season is focused on Flushing Meadows.

“The summer is irrelevant. It’s all about this tournament, honestly,” Tiafoe said in his postmatch interview.

Another American, 14th-seeded Tommy Paul, moved into the fourth round for the first time, defeating No. 21 Alejandro Davidovich Fokina of Spain 6-1, 6-0, 3-6, 6-3. Paul served up the last of his 15 aces to close out the match.

“I felt like I served a lot better, came to the net and played full-court tennis,” said Paul, who reached the semifinals of the Australian Open this year.

Paul will next face 20-year-old American Ben Shelton, who downed Russian Aslan Karatsev 6-4, 3-6, 6-2, 6-0 to reach his second Grand Slam tournament fourth round after his quarterfinal showing at this year’s Australian Open.

No. 2 seed Novak Djokovic will be in action at night in Arthur Ashe Stadium against fellow Serbian Laslo Djere, the No. 32 seed. Djokovic is chasing his 24th Grand Slam title and the departures of three high seeds in his half of the draw — No. 4 Holger Rune, No. 5 Casper Ruud and No. 7 Stefanos Tsitsipas — could help clear his path.

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