Tsitsipas Shines Against Fellow #NextGenATP Star
Competing with confidence after two straight-sets victories in the qualifying tournament, Tsitsipas knocked out Canadian Denis Shapovalov 6-3, 6-4 in 81 minutes for a place in the second round.
Tsitsipas won four of the first five games and recovered from 0/40 at 4-2. From 5-3 in the first set, the Greek qualifier won three straight games, but was soon pinned back by Shapovalov, who was also making his debut at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament. The crucial break came in a 10-point seventh game of the second set.
World No. 71 Tsitsipas will next challenge sixth seed and last year’s semi-finalist David Goffin of Belgium on Tuesday evening. He earned his only previous Top 10 victory last year in Antwerp against Goffin to gain a 1-0 lead in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series.
After losing the first game, it was one-way traffic for Spain’s No. 11 seed Roberto Bautista Agut, who defeated Peter Gojowczyk 6-4, 6-3 in 80 minutes. Bautista Agut has already picked up two ATP World Tour trophies this year at the ASB Classic (d. del Potro) and the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships (d. Pouille). He awaits France’s Benoit Paire or Feliciano Lopez of Spain.
Last year’s finalist Albert Ramos-Vinolas, the No. 15 seed, wrestled control away from American Jared Donaldson in a 6-3, 6-3 win over one hour and 37 minutes. He will next play Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany or American Tennys Sandgren, who finished runner-up in Houston on Sunday at the Fayez Sarofim & Co. U.S. Men's Clay Court Championship (l. to Johnson).