May 18, 2024

Open Court

MORE TENNIS THAN YOU'LL EVER NEED

MIAMI, Fla. – As long as anyone can remember, Denis Shapovalov coach Martin Laurendeau has been a fierce proponent of sun protection.

On Sunday in Miami, he went full haz-mat.

It wasn’t anywhere near the hottest day ever at the Miami Open. But it was sunny and warm. And Laurendeau, 53, dressed for the occasion.

Cap, wraparound on the face, sleeves, gloves, full pants. Only a few square inches of skin peeked through between the shirtsleeves and the sleeves, and the bottom of the sleeves and the gloves. 

No doubt there was liberal sunscreen applied to those areas, along with his face.

We talked to Laurendeau about this some years ago. And he said it wasn’t because he’d had skin cancer and was trying to prevent a recurrence. He hadn’t. But he doesn’t want to.

Yes, he looks completely ridiculous. He’d probably admit that.

But Laurendeau is also a whole lot smarter than the rest of us – including the tennis players – who expose our skin to the searing sun as the tennis tour follows that sun around the world every season.

So if we tease a little, there’s also major admiration for his willingness to go out like that in public. 

Meanwhile, his student, Shapovalov, ditched his ballcap on this day.

haz-mat

He sported a little topknot as he worked on his return of serve on an off-day, in preparation for his Monday match against American Sam Querrey.

Perhaps Shapovalov was trying to even out the ballcap tan on his forehead? Or, possibly, all the caps were in the laundry and he was waiting for the clean bag.

As you can see, it was a sweaty day.

Meanwhile, Shapovalov and Querrey, the No. 11 seed, are meeting for the first time.

And despite being in the third round of a Masters 1000, Shapovalov’s ranking hasn’t budged. That will remain true even if he beats Querrey.

The 18-year-old reached the final of a Challenger in Guadalajara, Mexico a year ago this week. Therefore, he has to defend those points.

After that, he has no more points to defend until the grass-court season.

With his result in Miami, Shapovalov has gone over the $1 million dollar mark in on-court earnings. Now that he’s an official resident of the Bahamas, he can enjoy a little tax relief on that.

About Post Author