It’s the 21-year-old Shelton’s second consecutive win against his American compatriot, following a victory during his breakthrough run to the US Open semifinals in September. It’s also his fourth win out of five against top-15 players, with victories against Jannik Sinner and Frances Tiafoe in that streak.
“It was definitely a difficult challenge, as it is whenever you play against a guy as talented and as tough as Tommy Paul,” the 19th-ranked Shelton said. “To be able to get through that with a win, it took a lot of mental toughness. I had to stay calm in the first set, serving for the set and then getting broken and having to finish it in the tiebreaker. It was a difficult task, but I’m happy to be moving on.”
Giron made a fast start in both sets to carry him to an 81-minute win against Auger-Aliassime, who had reached his first tour-level quarterfinal since May.
Hong Kong Open winner Leylah Fernandez also moved into the semifinals by eliminating Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-3, 6-4. The Canadian will play Katerina Siniakova, who progressed after Laura Siegemund withdrew before their quarterfinal match.
Due to wet weather in Nanchang on Thursday, the remaining second-round matches were played earlier Friday with Siniakova beating seventh-seeded Varvara Gracheva 6-4, 6-3 and Siegemund defeating Ulrikke Eikeri 6-1, 6-3.