Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Canada’s Shapovalov overcame errors to defeat Jere in the opening match of the Australian Open. CBC Sports

Denis Shapovalov of Canada overcame shaky moments and several unexpected turns to beat Laslo Jere of Serbia 7-6(3), 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(3) in the first round of the Australian Open Worked through errors.

Shapovalov of Richmond Hill, Ontario, opened with a long first set and needed three hours and 23 minutes to finish the match that ended with a long fourth set – both of which went to a tiebreak.

The 14th-ranked Canadian was not at his best – he had 68 unforced errors in the match – but he did what was needed to break through and overtake 52nd-ranked Jere.

Up 5–2 in the fourth, Shapovalov was serving for the match, but was in trouble when he made three unforced errors and a double mistake to advance the encounter. Jere fought off match point and broke Canada twice to force a tiebreak.

look | Shapovalov’s best performance for Jere at Australian Open:

Canada's Shapovalov overcame errors to defeat Jere in the opening match of the Australian Open. CBC Sports

Shapovalov defeats Jere in the first round of the Australian Open

Denis Shapovalov of Richmond Hill, Ontario defeated Laslo Jere of Serbia 7-6(3), 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(3) in the opening round of the Australian Open. 3:25

Shapovalov shrugged off those missed opportunities and forced Jere to go long at triple match point in the tiebreak.

The 22-year-old Shapovalov will take on Korea’s Sunwoo Kwon in the second round.

After losing the first two sets, Jere showed some struggle and worked fast against Canada in the third set of 34 minutes. Shapovalov lost serve in the second game and quickly lost 3–0. Jere went to serve the set.

Shapovalov was solid in the second set, with his break from Jere in the seventh game proving the difference.

Canada fought hard to win the first set. He was broken to start the match, and needed to fight two set points down 5-4 in the 10th game to survive. In the tiebreak, his fourth ace of the set put him 5-3 before Jere’s unforced error sealed it. Shapovalov made 22 unexpected mistakes in the first set.

Shapovalov made it to the semi-finals of Wimbledon last year, losing to world No. 1 Novak Djokovic. He reached the third round of last year’s Australian Open, losing to fellow Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassim.

Auger-Aliassim of Montreal is the other Canadian in the men’s main draw at this year’s tournament. Laval, Ky.’s Leyla Anne Fernandez and Vancouver’s Rebecca Marino are in the women’s singles draw.

look | Canadians to watch at the Australian Open:

Canada's Shapovalov overcame errors to defeat Jere in the opening match of the Australian Open. CBC Sports

Canadians to watch at the 2022 Australian Open

CBC Sports’ Vivek Jacob walks through the Canadian tennis stars you should watch as they prepare to compete at the 2022 Australian Open 3:17

Osaka tops Osorio

Naomi Osaka began her title defense by winning the first five games en route to a 6–3, 6–3 victory over Camila Osorio in the second match on the main court of the tournament.

With so much focus on the 11-day saga of Djokovic’s attempt at the first Grand Slam tournament of the year and his bid for a fourth consecutive title at Melbourne Park, Osaka’s return to action has been overshadowed.

After winning here last year, securing her second Australian Open title in three years, the four-time major winner withdrew from the 2021 French Open before the second round, then crashed out of Wimbledon. She played at the Tokyo Olympics, where she lit the cauldron, but ended her 2021 season early after a third-round loss and a turbulent news conference at the US Open.

Canada's Shapovalov overcame errors to defeat Jere in the opening match of the Australian Open. CBC Sports
Osaka reacts during her first round match against Osorio on Monday. (Hamish Blair/Associated Press)

Her two goals for 2022, she said last week, were to be fully prepared and enjoy the game on and off the court.

A smile as he pointed an all-over to give Osorio a breakpoint chance in the seventh game was probably a sign of the new approach. She skipped that service game but recovered quickly.

“It feels really good to start the year with this tournament,” Osaka said in an on-court interview after the match. “I thought I played really well given the conditions.”

Nadal kicks out Girono to start Grand Slam record bid

Rafa Nadal began his bid for a record 21st Grand Slam title by defeating American Marcos Giron 6-1 6-4 6-2 to reach the second round.

With Djokovic sent packing by the Australian authorities and Roger Federer absent, Nadal could straightaway snatch the men’s all-time slam record by claiming the title at Melbourne Park.

The only former champion left in the draw, the Spanish great made an impressive debut at the Rod Laver Arena, breaking world number 66 Giron five times for the match and overtaking the ousted American’s 34 winners.

Sixth seed Nadal will take on wildcard winner Thanasi Kokinakis and qualifier Yannick Hanfman for a place in the third round.

In other men’s singles results on the first day, Italian Matteo Berrettini defeated American Brandon Nakashima. 7 seed Berrettini lost the first set 6-4 but claimed victory in a 6-2, 7-6, 6-3 set.

France’s No. 17 Gael Monfils beat Argentina’s Federico Correa 6-1, 6-2, 6-3 and Spain’s No. 31 Carlos Alcaraz opened 6-2, 6-2, 6-3. Victory over Chile’s Alejandro Tabilo.

Australian wildcard Alexander Wukic beat South African number 30 Lloyd Harris 4-6, 6-3, 7-5, 7-6 (7-3).

Sakkari, Bencic and Svitolina won the first round matches.

Fifth seed Maria Sakari started the event with a 6-4, 7-6(2) win over Tatjana Maria on the main court at Melbourne Park.

“I was a bit tense because I was starting this tournament on this wonderful court. It’s a privilege for me,” Sakkari said. “I am very happy that I was able to find a way to win and sustain myself in the tournament.”

Tokyo Olympic gold medalist Belinda Bencic beat Kristina Mladenovic 6-4, 6-3 and 15th seed Elina Svitolina beat Fiona Ferro 6-1, 7-6(4).

Bencic will next face Amanda Anisimova, who defeated qualifier Ariane Hartono 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Number 30 Camila Georgi registered a 6-4, 6-0 win over Anastasia Potapova.

Nation World News Desk
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