Taylor Fritz says media and fan expectations can ruin young players

Taylor Fritz in action

Taylor Fritz believes that it is unfair to place massive expectations on young American players like Ben Shelton.

Fritz feels that fans and the media quickly get carried away and put unrealistic expectations on players.

He says that the expectations can prove a distraction from actual progress as a player.

Shelton pushed Fritz to three sets in their Indian Wells meeting and afterwards, the elder American issued a warning.

“I think it’s a really dangerous thing that people do putting crazy expectations on young American players,” said Fritz according to Ubitennis.

“He’s really talented.

“He’s super dangerous if he’s playing well, just with the serve and the weapons that he has.’

“He definitely has a really bright future. He’s got a super explosive game and he has a lot of stuff that he can still — a lot of stuff that he will improve on.”

Fritz says that it takes time for most players to get their game to the level where they can challenge for big titles, and the extra pressure hampers that progress.

He says that he wished he could have found a way to block that all out and to focus on what was really important.

“I felt like it was something that I maybe wasn’t ready for when I was 18, 19, and I think I was too young at the time to properly deal with it. I think it probably hurt me,” he said.

“I see it hurt a lot of young players because one of the most dangerous things that you can be dealing with in sports is having a lot of expectations and having a lot of pressure. It stops you from sometimes playing and competing as freely as you would like.”

Fritz feels that players would progress much faster if they are not burdened with unrealistic expectations held by people who don’t necessarily have insight into where their game is at.

“I wish I would have cared a lot less about all that stuff when I was younger, and I think that I could have had the progress in my game that I’ve had in the last couple of years maybe sooner.” He added.

Fritz, who is seeded fourth at Indian Wells, will take on 30th seed Sebastian Baez in the Round of 32 after coming through his battle with Shelton.

He is defending the Indian Wells title after claiming his maiden ATP Masters title in the California desert last year.

READ MORE: Andy Murray admits being thrown off by change of opponent