At U.S Open, Coric upsets Zverev, Shapovalov ousts Wilfred Tsonga
The harvest of upsets continued at Flushing Meadows yesterday with Croatia’s Borna Coric beating title hopeful, Alexander Zverev 3/6; 7/5; 7/6 (1); 7/6 (4) and the colourful Denis Shapovalov outlasting Joe-Wilfried Tsonga in three straight sets of 6/4; 6/4; 7/6 (3). Venus Williams defeated Oceane Dodin of France 7/5; 6/1 in a performance that revealed a crescendo in her form.
Zverev won the first set on a single break of his opponent’s serve. But it was a different matter in the second that was fought over 50 minutes and won by Coric, who also took the third set in a one-sided tally of seven points to one.
In the fourth, the fourth seed sent every shot in his full arsenal across the net but his opponent matched him with equal fluidity, powerful and deep returns. Sascha won the ninth game to lead 5-4. In the tenth game, Borna was down 15-40 and saved all the set points. At deuce, he hammered a first serve and the return was wide. At game point, another hard serve down the middle was returned out. With Coric leading 3-2 in the tie break, a shot from him skipped the net and dropped in but his opponent’s attempted winner skipped the net and sailed out. It was the critical point in the set. Zverev held his serve to reduce the tally. Serving at 5-4, Borna delivered a service winner to reach match point. A long rally followed and a forehand from Zverev was returned but challenged by Coric. The hawk-eye review showed it out. The upset was achieved after 3 hours and 27 minutes.
When Denis Shapovalov defeated Rafael Nadal in the first round in Montreal, it was ascribed to Nadal’s usual problem with fellow southpaws. But the Tel Aviv-born resident of Nassau, Bahamas progressed further. In his second round match against Tsonga, the 18-year Canadian played with a form that evoked reminiscences of a youthful Nadal winning his first French Open and the fluidity of John McEnroe.
Tsonga had no answer to the leftie serve wide to his two-fisted backhand. The Frenchman’s usually strong serve did not hit target as he made only 51 percent of first serves contrasted to his opponent’s 71 percent.
The pattern was set when the eight-seed lost the opening game of the match without taking a point on his serve. One break in the first and second sets gave Denis the lead.
In the third set tie-break, Tsonga double-faulted to lose the first point while Denis consolidated to lead 3-0. Tsonga lost two more service points and at 6-3, the Canadian delivered a first serve that Tsonga sent barely over the baseline. An unsuccessful Tsonga challenge was the drama that ended the classic performance by a kid to watch.