Quebec’s Felix Auger-Aliassime defeated American Mackenzie McDonald 7-6 (7), 6-1 to earn his ticket to the quarterfinals at the grass tournament in Halle.
Auger-Aliassime saved an inning ball before winning the first set on his second opportunity.
The ninth player in the world then had more ease in winning against its rival, ranked 53. Auger-Aliassime got the first service break of the match in the third game of the second set.
He returned to the charge two games later, and then the rest of the match was just a formality.
He ended the match by breaking McDonald’s serve for the third time in a row with a powerful winning forehand.
“It’s a very positive performance from me,” Auger-Aliassime told the ATP. The first round was typical of the grass game, with two good servers winning their games on serve.
It’s the kind of handle where whoever loses it will find it frustrating. We both had a good chance of winning it.
Auger-Aliassime managed 15 aces during the match and saved the only breaking ball he conceded to his opponent.
“Looking at the level I played in the second set, I think I would have had a chance to win even if I hadn’t won the first,” Auger-Aliassime said.
As soon as I got the service break in the second set, I started playing better and better.
In the quarterfinals, Auger-Aliassime will face Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz, ranked 12th in the world. Hurkacz defeated France’s Ugo Humbert 7-6 (5), 6-3.
Shapovalov finally loses in three sets.
For his part, Canadian Denis Shapovalov dropped the flag in the first round of the Queen’s Club tournament.
American Tommy Paul defeated Shapovalov 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 on Wednesday in a match that began on Tuesday but was interrupted after two sets due to darkness.
The match ended when Shapovalov sent a backhand into the net. The two men spent only 41 minutes on the field on Wednesday, but their duel officially lasted 2 hours and 2 minutes.
Paul ranked 35th in the world, got the decisive service break in the seventh game of the third set.
On serve at 3-5, Shapovalov saved a match ball before winning the game. Paul, however, later closed the books.
Shapovalov, the sixth seed at Queen’s Club, has lost his last five games, including the last two on grass. The Wimbledon tournament will shake on June 27.
In the second round, Paul will cross swords with the Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka.
In the other matches, Marin Cilic defeated Alexander Bublik 7-6 (6), 7-5 to advance to the quarterfinals, while Botic van de Zandschulp advanced to the next round by defeating Grigor Dimitrov 7-6 (5), 6-3.
The seventh seed, Cilic, won the Queen’s Club twice, in 2012 and 2018. He participated in the tournament for the 15th time.
He will face qualifier Emil Ruusuvuori in the quarters, who beat Britain’s Jack Draper 6-2, 7-6 (2).
Alejandro Davidovich Fokina will face van de Zandschulp after beating Alex de Minaur 4-6, 6-4, 7-5.
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