Denis Shapovalov Leads the Draw in Gstaad After Pulling Out of Tokyo Olympics 2020

Published 07/18/2021, 4:29 AM EDT
Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 9, 2021 Canada’s Denis Shapovalov celebrates breaking serve during his semi final match against Serbia’s Novak Djokovic REUTERS/Paul Childs

After giving Tokyo Olympics a miss, Canadian tennis star Denis Shapovalov has entered the Gstaad Open in Switzerland as the top seed.


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Coming into the Wimbledon Championships this year on the back of decent grass court form that saw him reach the quarterfinals in Stuttgart and the semifinals at the Queen’s Club Championships, Shapovalov went the deepest he has ever gone in a Grand Slam.

Taking down accomplished opponents in the form of crowd favorite and two-time champion Andy Murray, Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut, and Russian Karen Khachanov, the Canadian reached the last-four at All England.


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Denis Shapovalov suffered heartbreaking Wimbledon SF loss to Novak Djokovic

However, the dream of becoming the first from his country to lift a Grand Slam title ended in tears as he bowed out after losing in straight sets to World No.1 and eventual champion Novak Djokovic.

There was more disappointment in store for the Shapovalov fans thereafter as the Canadian tweeted that he was pulling out of the Tokyo Olympics owing to concerns about traveling to the Japanese capital at a time the country was experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases.

The current World No.10 broke the news on Twitter, saying, “After careful consideration, I wanted to let you know that I will not be participating in the Olympics this year.

“Representing Canada means the world to me, but due to the current situation my team and I have decided that this is the best decision for everyone’s safety.”

Gstaad will see the return of Shapovalov after All England disappointment

Gstaad will see him returning to action after the Wimbledon disappointment.

Also in the draw is veteran Spanish star Feliciano Lopez, who also announced his withdrawal from the Tokyo Games.

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Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 7, 2021 Canada’s Denis Shapovalov in action during his quarter final match against Russia’s Karen Khachanov REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Among the other top stars in singles are rising Norwegian tennis star Casper Ruud and veteran Frenchman Benoit Paire.

Hugely promising youngster Dominic Stricker, who is already being seen as the next big thing in Swiss tennis, will shoulder his nation’s hopes in the tournament, which kicked off on Saturday and will end on July 25.


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Priyabrata Chowdhury

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Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.



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