ATP Rogers Cup: Canadian teens steal the show

ATP Rogers Cup: Canadian teens steal the show
Denis Shapovalov (left) and Felix Auger-Aliassime we victorious on Tuesday at the Rogers Cup. Photos: Getty Images

It takes a lot to overshadow a reigning Wimbledon, but a pair of local teens made headlines with dominating performances on day two at the Rogers Cup. There were upsets, blowouts, and more rain as first-round action was completed at the Aviva Centre.

Results

The day started off with a pair of upsets. First off, on centre court, 16th seed Nick Kyrgios couldn't seem to shake off his troublesome hip as he was sent packing in a tough three-setter with former world number three Stan Wawrinka. Check out the full recap here. Meanwhile, 2016 Toronto runner-up Kei Nishikori failed to reclaim his magic in Canada’s largest city as he was ousted in straight sets by Robin Haase in his opening match.

Novak Djokovic crushes a forehand during his wild ride on Tuesday in Toronto. Photo: Getty Images
Novak Djokovic crushes a forehand during his wild ride on Tuesday in Toronto. Photo: Getty Images

Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic’s day got off to an unusual start as, just hours before the match, his opponent, Hyeon Chung, was forced to withdraw with an injury. Instead, it was Mirza Basic taking on the three-time Rogers Cup champion on Centre Court. In the end, it did not shake the former world number one as he took out his new opponent in straight sets, despite blowing two break leads late in the second set, which required a tiebreak for the Serb to close out the win.

It was a big day for the future of Canadian tennis, as both of the host nation's teen stars were in action on Centre Court. First up was the Rogers Cup debut of Félix Auger-Aliassime. Despite facing a top-twenty opponent for the first time in his career, world number 18 Lucas Pouille, the teen showed why there is so much hype surrounding him, winning in straight sets. Check out the full recap here.

In the evening session, Canadian number one Denis Shapovalov was equally impressive. Last year's semifinalist won the first five games of his match with Jeremy Chardy, eventually cruising to victory in straight sets. Check out the full recap here. He will meet 14th seed Fabio Fognini in the second round, who overcame Steve Johnson in straight sets.

Denis Shapovalov scored an impressive victory in his first-round match at the Rogers Cup. Photo: Getty Images
Denis Shapovalov scored an impressive victory in his first-round match at the Rogers Cup. Photo: Getty Images

Once again, rain was a factor. Grigor Dimitrov had to wait over an hour to finish his tight second-round clash with Fernando Verdasco. The pair were tied at 4-all in the third set when they were forced to stop. When play resumed, both men won their final two service games before Dimitrov narrowly claimed victory in a tiebreak.

Sixth seed Marin Cilic needed to wait until after 10:45 pm local time to get his match with countryman Borna Coric underway. The pair went the distance, with Cilic avoiding an upset by claiming victory 6-1 in the third just before 1:00 am. 

In other action, Sam Querrey, Karen Khachanov, Frances Tiafoe, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Ryan Harrison were all victorious in straight sets. Evgeny Donskoy caused a minor upset by taking out countryman Andrey Rublev in straight sets.

Second round action continues tomorrow with four Canadians leading the way in Centre Court action, as well as world number one Rafael Nadal's first match in Toronto since 2010.