Shapovalov wins epic duel with Silva
Originally published on 08/08/17 00:00
The skillful 18-year-old, who defeated Nick Kyrgios at the same stage in Toronto last year, thrives on the big stage and he showcased his shotmaking qualities in front of a vociferous home crowd on Court Central.
Shapovalov has the ability to crack winners from anywhere on the court but he was inconsistent and erratic in the first set. His dependable opponent made his young rival pay for his mistakes and the Brazillian was firmly in the ascendancy.
Shapovalov continued to scrap in the second set but he was constantly under pressure – and he did well to force a tiebreak after saving six break-points in regulation play.
Silva appeared set for a routine victory when he established a 6-4 lead in the shootout, but Shapovalov refused to buckle. The 18-year-old continued to be proactive and his unwavering attacking approach eventually paid dividends.
The world No.143 saved four match-points in total however it was the manner in which he saved the second that was most impressive. The creative youngster was isolated at the net yet he still managed to produce an outstanding volley to deny his rival and thrill the capacity crowd.
Locked at eight apiece, Shapovalov nudged a forehand long but there was no call from the line-judge and the Brazillian opted not to challenge – and he eventually lost the point. Moments later his misery was compounded as he double-faulted to surrender his scoreboard advantage.
Shapovalov was purring in the third set and he was eager to make the most of his second chance. The Brazillian dropped serve in the seventh game and the Canadian party was soon underway.
Elsewhere on the grounds, David Goffin fought back from a set down to defeat Yuichi Sugita 4-6 6-1 6-4, Sam Querrey – a winner in Mexico last week – edged a tight affair with Vincent Millot 4-6 7-6(4) 7-5, and Pablo Carreno Busta defeated Karen Khachanov 3-6 6-3 6-2.