Félix Auger-Aliassime made his debut in 2021 with the presentation of Canada’s first duel in the ATP Cup, against the United States. The day was in limbo for the Maple Leaf representatives, who lost their two singles matches on Saturday in Sydney.
The FAA had to definitely beat Taylor Fritz, the 23rd player in the men’s standings, to allow Canada to preserve its chances of winning. But Quebec lost in three rounds 6-7 (6), 6-4, 6-4.
The world’s eleventh racket had no interruptions in service and was not reassured when the balls were in hand. Auger-Aliassime gave it all in the first set to snatch the thirteenth tiebreaker from Fritz. He had to save four fixed points.
In the following attacks, the American was satisfied with the bare minimum, breaking the 21-year-old in the third game of the second set, then 3-3 in the final round.
Quebec had participated in a professional tournament for the last time last November in Stockholm. His compatriot Denis Shapovalov finished his journey in the semi-finals.
Schnorr is no match for Eisner
Brayden Schnur was the surprise contender for John Isner to start Canada’s journey to the ATP Cup, but substitute Denis Shapovalov was easily defeated by the American in two sets 6-1, 6-3.
Shabu is forced to surrender an hour before his duel because he is still suffering from the side effects of COVID-19. As soon as he arrived in Australia on December 25, the world’s 14th player tested positive for the coronavirus.
Released from solitary confinement after five days, he said he had only mild symptoms.
That’s how Schnorr, the world’s humbled 238th racket, was sent to take on the American giant. Isner had a hard time hitting 10 aces and winning 80% of his first ball rally.
The 24 best player in the world broke the Canadian’s serve four times, while the latter received a tiebreak once.
Auger-Aliassim, Shapovalov, Fritz and Isner are scheduled to play doubles later in the evening.
Canada finished third and last in Group A in 2021, and was unable to qualify for the playoffs. This year’s maple leaf opponents are the United States, Great Britain and Germany.
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