Shapovalov pushes Djokovic to limit in ATP Cup quarters but Canada falls to Serbia

SYDNEY, Australia — Denis Shapovalov pushed world No. 2 Novak Djokovic to the limit but lost 4-6, 6-1, 7-6 (4) on Friday as Canada was eliminated by Serbia from the ATP Cup’s quarterfinal.

Shapovalov, ranked No. 14 in the world, had lost all four of his previous meetings with Djokovic.

Earlier, Montreal’s Felix Auger-Aliassime fell to Dusan Lajovic 6-4, 6-2 in the first match the quarterfinal.

Serbia advanced to the semifinal with a 2-0 lead, but the two countries still played a doubles match on Friday.

Shapovalov pushed Djokovic to triple deuce in the first set, then dropped a clever volley during a lengthy rally to take a 5-4 lead. The young Canadian continued to push the pace on the next point, winning the set when Djokovic’s return went into the net.

Djokovic shifted the momentum in the second set, with the pro-Serbian crowd getting behind him. With Djokovic leading 3-1, chair umpire Carlos Bernardes had to warn the crowd to be quiet.

After Djokovic took a 4-1 lead in the second set, Bernardes warned Canadian captain Peter Polansky that Shapovalov was not to directly address rowdy fans after the 20-year-old from Richmond Hill, Ont., took issue with how some spectators had spoken to him.

Three points later, Bernardes lectured the crowd about their behaviour.

“The most important thing between all of us is respect,” he said over the public address system. “If you don’t want to watch tennis just go home. Don’t disturb the people who are here to watch tennis.”

Djokovic continued to roll through the second set, with Shapovalov requiring a medical timeout afterward.

Shapovalov seemed more sharp in the third set, but couldn’t convert on two critical 30-30 points, putting Djokovic in command 5-4.

A video review found that Djokovic’s return on game point was slightly wide, tying the third set 5-5. Shapovalov jumped on the opportunity, winning the next point.

An ace for game point then gave Shapovalov a 6-5 lead, but his shoes stuck to the hardcourt when returning the next point, sailing it well over Djokovic’s head to send it to a tiebreak.

Djokovic came out firing in the tiebreak, taking a 6-1 lead, but Shapovalov fired two aces to cut that lead to 6-3.

Holding serve, Djokovic then put a return into the net to cut into his own lead 6-4. On the next point, Shapovalov’s return went too deep, advancing Serbia to the semifinals.

Earlier Friday, aside from a brief 2-1 lead in the second set, Auger-Aliassime struggled against Lajovic.

Auger-Aliassime’s return was just past the baseline for the match point, with Lajovic pumping his fist as the ball landed out of bounds.

Belgium played Spain in Friday’s other quarterfinal.

Host Australia advanced with a 2-1 win over Britain and Russia routed Argentina 3-0 in Thursday’s quarterfinals.

The semifinals are set for Saturday and the final on Sunday.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Trail RCMP report three impaired driving investigations. Photo: Black Press file
New drunk driving rules allow police to impose tougher penalties immediately

New impaired driving regulations started on Tuesday

(Lacombe Express file photo)
Lacombe County holds the line on taxes

Staff hiring freeze planned for 2021 to make up for lost oil and gas revenue

Alberta premier Jason Kenney declared a public health state of emergency Tuesday and sweeping new measures as COVID-19 cases in the province continue to rise.  (photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Alberta premier says hospitals stressed by COVID-19, more surgeries may be cancelled

EDMONTON — Premier Jason Kenney says Alberta’s largest hospitals are at 91… Continue reading

A cleaner wipes a glass panel at Toronto's Eaton Centre Shopping mall on Saturday, March 21, 2020. The national statistics office will say this morning how much the domestic economy bounced back in the third quarter of the year. The Canadian economy suffered its worst three-month stretch on record in the second quarter as the economy came to a near halt in April before starting to recover in May and June. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
Statistics Canada says economy grew at a record pace in third quarter of 2020

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says the economy grew at a record annualized… Continue reading

Bill C-4 passed in the House of Commons to authorize new benefits for workers left jobless or underemployed by the COVID-19 pandemic. (File photo)
Tory MPs keep talking on assisted dying bill as clock ticks down to Dec. 18 deadline

OTTAWA — Conservative MPs are refusing to be rushed into a vote… Continue reading

Idyllic winter scenes are part of the atmosphere of the holiday season, and are depicted in many seasonal movies. How much do you know about holiday movies? Put your knowledge to the test. (Pixabay.com)
QUIZ: Test your knowledge of holiday movies and television specials

The festive season is a time for relaxing and enjoying some seasonal favourites

(Black Press File Photo)
Rimbey woman gathering Christmas gifts for seniors at Valleyview Manor

Margaret Tanasiuk says she doesn’t want anyone to feel forgotten on Christmas morning

Mike Miltimore, seen in Kamloops, B.C., in an undated handout photo, says the Gretsch electric guitar that a woman brought into his store is from 1955 and similar to one played by country music legend Chet Atkins before he developed his signature series of guitars. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Mike Miltimore
Guitar made in 1950s worth more than B.C. family imagined

KAMLOOPS, B.C. — When Renee Latheur decided to take an old guitar… Continue reading

Lewis Hamilton won the German Grand Prix after Sebastian Vettel crashed while leading near the end. (Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Hamilton positive for COVID-19, will miss F1’s Sakhir GP

SAKHIR, Bahrain — Seven-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton has tested positive… Continue reading

In this Dec. 19, 2019 file photo, the advertising label of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, shines at their headquarters in Vienna, Austria. Leaders of the OPEC cartel are meeting virtually to decide how much oil their countries should produce as the coronavirus stifles demand for fuel. They’re expected to extend production cuts into the new year in an effort to boost prices. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak, File)
OPEC talks on production hit snag as pandemic clouds outlook

FRANKFURT — The OPEC oil producers’ cartel was to push ahead with… Continue reading

Vancouver Whitecaps forward Fredy Montero celebrates after scoring a goal against the Los Angeles Galaxy during the second half of an MLS soccer match in Portland, Ore., Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020. The Vancouver Whitecaps are hanging on to several of their young players and continuing contract talks with two veterans, including Montero. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Steve Dipaola
Whitecaps exercise options on seven players, ‘continuing discussions’ with Montero

Whitecaps exercise options on seven players, ‘continuing discussions’ with Montero

Toronto FC forward Pablo Piatti (7) cuts past Vancouver Whitecaps defender Ali Adnan (53) during first half MLS Canadian Championship soccer action in Toronto on Friday, August 21, 2020. Barring a new agreement, Toronto FC is parting ways with designated player Pablo Piatti. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Toronto FC looks for new designated player, opts not to pick up Piatti option

Toronto FC looks for new designated player, opts not to pick up Piatti option

Hamilton Forge FC players celebrate their win over CD Olimpia's during Scotiabank CONCACAF League 2019 action in Hamilton, Ont., Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019. After a season that has taken it from Hamilton to Charlottetown, El Salvador and Panama, Forge FC hopes the Dominican Republic is the last stop on the way to the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter Power
Forge FC just one win away from booking ticket to CONCACAF Champions League

Forge FC just one win away from booking ticket to CONCACAF Champions League

A police officer patrols near the Olympic Symbol being transported on a barge in the Odaiba section Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020, in Tokyo. The five Olympic rings are back in Tokyo Bay. They were removed for maintenance four months ago shortly after the Tokyo Olympics were postponed until next year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)
Olympic rings back in Tokyo Bay; a sign of hope in pandemic

Olympic rings back in Tokyo Bay; a sign of hope in pandemic

Most Read