Ben Johns celebrates a pickleball point.
Ben Johns competing at the Fanatics Sportsbook North Carolina Cup presented by CIBC. PPA Tour

Johns bests Staksrud, earns first Triple Crown of 2024

CARY, NC - For the first time in 2024, Ben Johns is a Triple Crown winner.

After his earlier victories in men’s doubles and mixed doubles, he took down Federico Staksrud 7-11, 11-5, 11-6 to win the men’s singles title and secure the achievement.

The No. 2 seed Staksrud came out on fire, masterfully mixing his cat-and-mouse game style with well-placed forehand drives that kept Johns at bay at the kitchen line.

But Johns was able to tie things up and take Game 2. Playing with the wind at his back gave him some more juice on his drives, which helped him gain the upper hand.

He continued that momentum to build a sizeable lead in the deciding game and never looked back from there to capture his third singles title in his last three tournaments.

The top seed didn’t expect it to take three months to earn triple gold to start off the year, but he’s happy to have gotten the job done in North Carolina.

“Not an ideal start to the year in my mind, but better late than never,” he said of earning the Triple Crown. “I was very determined to get this one, and I’m just happy I could pull it out.”