The players list for the 10th edition of the Gatineau Futures presented by the Turpin Group, National Bank Financial, was unveiled on Wednesday. Sanctioned by the International Tennis Federation (ITF), the tournament, which offers $25, 000 U.S. in total prize money, will be held from February 25 to March 5, 2017 at the Sporthèque in Gatineau.
Playing in his second Gatineau Futures tournament, 17-year old Denis Shapovalov (Richmond Hill, ON) highlights the players entered in the main draw. Currently the no. 7 ranked junior player in the world, he is slated to be the second seed in this year’s tournament. Shapovalov had a career year in 2016, where he climbed the pro rankings and currently sits at no. 251. His 2016 campaign was highlighted by a trip to the junior Roland-Garros semifinals, capturing the junior Wimbledon title in July, and winning three Futures tournaments. Playing alongside fellow Canadian Félix Auger-Aliassime, he was also the doubles finalist at junior Wimbledon. Last year in Gatineau, Shapovalov was eliminated in the second round and fell in the doubles semifinals to the eventual champions. He will be joined in the main draw by his compatriot and Gatineau regular Philip Bester (Vancouver, BC), who was the singles finalist in 2015 and is currently ranked no. 335 in the world. Brayden Schnur (Pickering, ON), ranked no. 392 in the world, will also join the Canadian contingent in the main draw. Rising star Félix Auger-Aliassime (Montreal, QC) has received one of the four available tournament wildcards. The 3rd ranked junior player in the world and reigning junior U.S. Open champion will be looking to improve on his first round singles loss at the Gatineau Futures in 2016.
“Interest in Canadian tennis is being propelled by the success of both our younger and older players. We have players who are making a name for themselves on the junior and professional circuits. Local tournaments, such as the Gatineau Futures, play an important role in showcasing the talent being produced in Canada,” said Richard Quirion, Tournament Director.
Once again, a variety of countries will be represented in the 2017 edition of the tournament. France will lead the way with four players in the main draw, most notably the top seed Gregoire Barrere. Not only a proficient singles player, the Frenchman is also a skilled doubles player, having won the doubles title at the Bangkok Challenger in early January. This year also marks the return of Tim Puetz to Gatineau, who won both the singles and doubles titles in 2013.
The Gatineau Futures presented by the Turpin Group, National Bank Financial, is the first in a series of three tournaments that will be played in Quebec during the months of February and March. The event will be followed by the Sherbrooke Futures and the Drummondville National Bank Challenger.