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#NextGenATP Shapovalov Stuns Nadal In Montreal

 #NextGenATP Canadian Denis Shapovalov delivered the performance of his career on Thursday evening, stunning World No. 2 Rafael Nadal 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(4) in front of an electric Court Central crowd at the Coupe Rogers in Montreal.

Shapovalov becomes the youngest quarter-finalist at an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament. He's also the second-youngest player to beat Nadal (Coric, 2014 Basel).

#NextGenATP Denis Shapovalov picks up the biggest win of his career on Thursday at the Coupe Rogers in Montreal.
For the Spaniard, a return to No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings will have to wait. Nadal would have returned to No. 1 for the first time since June 2014 if he had reached the semi-finals in Montreal.

Andy Murray will remain at No. 1 for another week but at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati next week, Nadal and Roger Federer will battle for the top spot.

Shapovalov will look to continue his dream run at his home Masters 1000 tournament when he faces Frenchman Adrian Mannarino, who dismissed #NextGenATP Korean Hyeon Chung 6-3, 6-3 to reach his first Masters 1000 quarter-final in his 31st attempt.

But this much is clear so far: Shapovalov brings an entirely different level of tennis to Court Central. The 18 year old, No. 143 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, has now knocked off three top ATP World Tour players on that court during the past two years: Nick Kyrgios last year, Juan Martin del Potro earlier this week and Nadal became his latest upset victim in their marathon two-hour and 45-minute battle.

With “The Great One” Wayne Gretzky and his wife in attendance, Shapovalov was ready from the start for another high-octane match in the Canadian metropolis. He fought to 3-3 with Nadal in the opening set, but the Spaniard sprinted through the remainder of the opener and looked as if he would need only two sets.

Shapovalov, though, came out strong in the second set, and had two chances to go up 5-1. But Nadal fought back and pushed the second set to 4-4 before Shapovalov recovered to even the third-round match.

On his first set point, the Canadian mishit a return that Nadal lifted long, and Shapovalov raised his arms to roars from his thousands of fans.

The Canadian had success exchanging forehands with Nadal and was fearless with his shot selection, taking every cheer as encouragement. For the match, the Canadian finished with 49 winners to 41 unforced errors. He delivered nine aces to only two from Nadal.

Shapovalov also dealt an effective 1-2 punch while returning, pushing Nadal to one corner before striking a one-handed backhand or forehand up the line.

But Nadal, a 30-time Masters 1000 titlist, dug in for the decider, as did Shapovalov. Serving at 1-1, the 18 year old erased three break points and held during a 14-minute and 30-second game, showing the Spaniard he was not going away in the final set. For the match, Shapovalov erased nine of 11 break points.

In the tie-break, it again looked as if Nadal would finally pull away. He jumped out to a 3/0 lead. But this time it was Shapovalov's turn to fight back, and he won seven of the tie-break's final eight points to earn the biggest win of his life. Fittingly, he blasted a forehand winner on his first match point.

Source: http://www.atpworldtour.com/en/news/nadal-shapovalov-montreal-2017-thursday

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