February 23, 2024

Open Court

MORE TENNIS THAN YOU'LL EVER NEED

Young Canadians Shapovalov, Auger-Aliassime banged up

WIMBLEDON – The lovely people in Winnipeg, Manitoba no doubt were looking forward to two of the hottest prospects in men’s tennis gracing the fair Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club for a Challenger next week.

Unfortunately, neither 18-year-old Denis Shapovalov nor 16-year-old Félix Auger-Aliassime will be there.

There’s been some wear and tear as the two teenagers have taken on the grownups in recent weeks.

In Shapovalov’s case, after his effort at Queen’s Club and his Grand Slam main draw debut Monday, it’s a matter of recovery and adjusting back to the hard courts.

Here is what he is quoted as saying by Tennis Canada:

“The past few weeks have been busier than I had initially anticipated and I have had to slightly alter my plan. I will take a few days off in order to recover and to prepare for the upcoming hard court season. I would like to wish the fans in Winnipeg a very successful tournament and I hope to see them next year.”

It’s not exactly shocking news. And Shapovalov is expected at Challenger events in other Canadian cities – Gatineau and Granby, Quebec – the following two weeks.

Air Felix has a wrist issue

For Auger-Aliassime, still only 16, the news is more concerning.

The Montreal kid, who became one of the youngest ever to win an ATP Tour Challenger a few weeks ago, is not only out of Winnipeg, he is out of all three Challengers – Winnipeg, Gatineau and Granby. The reason is a left wrist injury.

Tennis Canada’s quote from Auger-Aliassime:

“I am obviously very disappointed to have to stay on the sidelines for a few weeks, especially since I always enjoy playing at home. However, I have to listen to my body so that I can get back to 100 per cent for the final leg of the season. I wish great success to the various organizing committees and I hope to be able to come back and compete in these tournaments next year.”

(Unlikely the two kids actually said those things. But it sounds good).

Both Shapovalov and Auger-Aliassime have singles wild cards into the Rogers Cup, which is a Masters 1000 event held in Montreal the second week of August. 

Both also are entered in the qualifying of an ATP Tour event in Washington, D.C. the previous week.

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