Photo: ATP Tour
Denis Shapovalov barely broke a sweat in his 6-1, 6-3, 6-2 demolition of Bernard Tomic in the Australian Open second round. Next up for the 21-year-old is a mouth-watering clash against fellow Canadian Félix Auger-Aliassime.
Against a brand-new opponent in Tomic, Shapovalov showed no signs of fatigue following his epic five-set thriller against Jannik Sinner in the previous round. In fact, the Canadian looked full of energy on his way to a convincing straight-sets victory over the World No. 233 – who was ranked as high as No. 17 in 2016.
It took the left-hander just 23 minutes to see out a dominant first set 6-1 and the second set was just as impressive as he dragged his opponent from side to side with a series of his signature leaping backhands and powerful forehands.
Very rarely was Shapovalov in any serious danger – and his ratio of 37 winners to 22 unforced errors dwarfed Tomic’s corresponding stats of 18 to 40. All in all, the match took sub-two hours to complete, which shows just how masterful of a performance this was from the Canadian.
Now, though, he faces a familiar foe – or, more accurately, friend – in round three. Auger-Aliassime and Shapovalov have clashed three times in their pro careers, two of which of have come at the US Open – the other was at the Madrid Open in 2019.
Shapovalov holds the upper hand with two wins to Auger-Aliassime’s one, and it’s fair to say there won’t be a Canadian tennis fan who isn’t glued to their television screen tomorrow watching two of the country’s very best battle it out.