Frances Tiafoe noticed former First Lady Michelle Obama in attendance and started feeling concerned that she would think he’s “a bum” since he was struggling on his return at the start of his match versus Carlos Alcaraz.
On Friday night, on Arthur Ashe Stadium, Tiafoe fell short to Alcaraz in a five-set US Open semifinal battle. “I seen her like 2-1 in the first, kind of turned my head right. She looked at me. Before they announced her, put it on the Jumbotron, I already seen her.
Everybody was pointing at her. I seen her. I think I shanked a return. Yeah, she thinks I’m a bum, can’t make a return (smiling),” Tiafoe said. “Seeing her there was crazy. Obviously there was a lot of who’s whos in there tonight.
Obviously we all know what she means. Crazy. Crazy getting to meet her after. Seen her before, but it’s a little bit different circumstance. She sees me and she’s actually excited to see me. Yeah, unbelievable. Unbelievable night.”
Tiafoe on his impressive tie-break record
Tiafoe went 8-0 in tie-breaks throughout the US Open.
On Friday, Tiafoe fell short in five sets as Alcaraz won 6-7 (6) 6-3 6-1 6-7 (5) 6-3. After winning two sets via a tie-break, Tiafoe started laughing as even he was at a loss for words after going 8-0 in tie-breaks at Flushing Meadows.
“I don’t know, man,” said Tiafoe. “That’s crazy. I was laughing after I won the fourth in the breaker. This is wild. I don’t know. I guess the breakers are just making sense. I really don’t know what to say.”
Tiafoe fell just short of reaching his first Grand Slam final but he is set to break into the top-20 for the first time on his career on Monday.