High hopes, low results for Canadians at Wimbledon
High expectations, low results.
Canada earlier this year was a “rising superpower”, according to the Guardian and others. Bianca Andreescu won Indian Wells. Teen phenoms Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime went deep in Miami.
But it’s been a tough three months in Europe.
Andreescu, 19, missed most of the clay and all of the grass swing due to a shoulder injury.
Shapovalov, 20, says he’s doing well in practice but not in matches. He’s won a million dollars this year but only two matches since March. He exited Wimbledon after a first round loss to Ricardas Berankis.
Former Wimbledon finalist Genie Bouchard, now age 25 and ranked 79, lost first round to Tamara Zidansek, ranked 61. Bouchard hasn’t won since February but has over 6 million in career prize money plus millions from endorsements.
Milos Raonic, former finalist and semi-finalist at Wimbledon, was aiming for a potential semi-final match with Novak Djokovic. Raonic, age 28 and ranked 17th, won his first three matches comfortably, and was serving for the match at 5-3 against Argentina’s Guido Pella. But Pella fought back and took it in five sets. Raonic later said he ran out of gas, and he questioned his training. Raonic, dealing with various injuries, missed the clay season, and hasn’t beaten any top 20 players since January.
This puts a lot of pressure on Felix Auger-Aliassime to fly the Maple Leaf flag. London bookies made him the fifth favorite to win Wimbledon. But Felix reminded media that he never won a grand slam match. He finally did that on Canada Day, beating Vasek Pospisil, and then defeated crafty young French lefty Corentin Moutet. But Felix, looking forward to a round four versus Djokovic, said he was “embarrassed” to lose his third rounder to Ugo Humbert of France.
The good news is that Felix, Denis and Milos are returning with good health to their favored hardcourt surface in Washington, Montreal, Cincinnati and the US Open in New York.
(words and images Christopher Johnson Globalite Media all rights reserved)