Pascal Ratthe/Tennis Canada
Denis Shapovalov went the distance in his opening round match at the U.S. Open on Tuesday night and managed to pull out a confidence-boosting 2-6, 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 6-1 five-set victory over Swiss qualifier Marc-Andrea Heusler to make it five Canadians in the second round of singles at the final Grand Slam event of the season in Flushing Meadows, New York.
After getting off to a sluggish start, the 23-year-old, seeded no. 19 in the tournament, saw the match turn in his favour in the middle of the second set after a lengthy game that concluded with his first service break of the contest. He carried that momentum all the way through the third frame to take a two sets to one lead.
But Heusler wouldn’t go down without a fight. He steadied himself in the fourth and one wayward service game from Shapovalov was enough to force a fifth and deciding set which the Canadian dominated from start to finish to advance to the second round of the U.S. Open, the most successful Major of his career to date, for the sixth straight year. He improves his record in New York to 14-5.
In round two on Thursday, Shapovalov will face the winner of the all-Spanish affair between Roberto Carballes Baena and Jaume Munar.
Bianca Andreescu, Félix Auger-Aliassime, Leylah-Annie Fernandez, and Rebecca Marino will all be in action on Wednesday looking to book their tickets into the third round. Their matches can be seen on TSN and RDS.