Photo: Martin Sidorjak

It was a night of firsts for Denis Shapovalov on Friday in Paris. It was his first time playing under the lights on Court Philippe-Chatrier, his maiden third-round appearance at Roland-Garros, and his first encounter against World No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz.

The evening also ended with his first loss to the talented Spaniard by a 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 score which is not necessarily indicative of how the match unfolded as many of the games were tightly contested.


Alcaraz came out ready to make a big statement to rest of the men’s field and he did exactly that, winning the opening set in emphatic fashion as he dictated the proceeding from start to finish while making it difficult for Shapovalov to get him on the defensive. The Canadian found another gear at the start of set two as his signature shotmaking came to the forefront to help him forge a 4-1 lead and build a little confidence. Unfortunately, the boost was short-lived as Alcaraz proceeded to reel off five consecutive games and take a commanding two-set lead. The Spaniard’s domination continued in the final frame as a discouraged Shapovalov was unable to offer up much resistance despite a valiant effort as Alcaraz booked his spot in the Round of 16.

Despite the loss and a troublesome knee, Shapovalov still posted the best result of his career at Roland-Garros and now he’s headed to the grass-court portion of the tennis calendar, a surface that he excels on.

Canadians Perfect in Doubles

Canada went undefeated in women’s and mixed doubles on Friday at the French Open with Bianca Andreescu, Gabriela Dabrowski, and Leylah Annie Fernandez all posting victories.

Andreescu, who will contest her third-round singles match on Saturday against Lesia Tsurenko, advanced to round two in mixed doubles alongside Michael Venus of New Zealand. The pair posted a 2-6, 6-1, 10-8 win over Nicole Melichar-Martinez and Kevin Krawietz. They will next face Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Mate Pavic.

As for Dabrowski, she played six sets of tennis and won two matches. In mixed, she and American Nathaniel Lammons beat the French team of Chloe Paquet and Lucas Pouille 6-7(3), 6-2, 10-8. In women’s doubles, the Ottawa native and Luisa Stefani, seeded eighth, erased a break deficit in the third set en route to a 4-6, 6-2, 7-5 triumph over Dalma Galfi and Katarzyna Piter. In the third round, they will face Fernandez and American Taylor Townsend who beat Ingrid Neel and Fang-Hsien Wu 6-2, 6-1 to move on.