TennisSection previews the 2021 Toronto Open as Denis Shapovalov (5) meets Frances Tiafoe in the Second Round on Wednesday August 11th, 2021.
A fascinating battle is expected between two of the ATP Tour’s most exciting young stars here at the 2021 Toronto Open. Fifth seeded Canadian Denis Shapovalov will face Frances Tiafoe of the United States for a spot in the Round of 16. Both players are capable of some flashy tennis and are big hitters so the fans will be entertained regardless of the outcome. Can Frances Tiafoe pull off the upset? Or can local hero Denis Shapovalov get the win on home soil?
Denis Shapovalov is the fifth seed here at the 2021 Toronto Open, and is currently ranked #10 on the ATP Tour. The Canadian star has really matured as a player over the past few seasons and broke into the top 10 for the first time in 2020. He has been having a solid season so far but will be disappointed to have not yet won a title, and will be aiming to change that here at the Rogers Cup. This was the scene of where he truly announced himself on the ATP Tour in 2017, with a stunning win over Rafael Nadal as a teenager en route to the Semi-Finals. He will have fond memories of these courts and will be full of confidence here as one of the main challengers for the title. Shapovalov enters this match against Frances Tiafoe as the big favorite, but will certainly be wary of the talented American.
Frances Tiafoe is unseeded here at the 2021 Toronto Open and is the #52 ranked player in the world. The young American has long been touted as a future star, but has largely failed to live up to that huge billing. Tiafoe has had some big performances though, and certainly is capable of beating anyone on his day, and is someone that all players prefer to avoid. Surprisingly losing in the Qualifying Rounds here at the Rogers Cup, he was granted a lifeline when Sebastian Korda withdrew and made the most of it, defeating Yoshihito Nishioka in the First Round in a dominant win. While he is the underdog here against Denis Shapovalov, his powerful baseline game always make him a threat and he should not be fully discounted.
This will be the sixth meeting between the two players with the Canadian dominating the head to head 4-1. In fact, he has won the past four meetings, with Frances Tiafoe’s only win coming all the way back in 2018. This match is sure to be a special one and is not one that fans will want to miss, and both these players are considered “must see TV”. Even though Tiafoe is a special player, I expect Denis Shapovalov to win this match as he is the most consistent player, and has shown that he is ready to compete at this level. The American tends to lose his focus easily, which is a recipe for disaster against a top 10 player, and especially one that he has not defeated in three years. I expect a thriller, with the Canadian getting the win here to advance to the Round of 16 of the 2021 Toronto Open.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Denis Shapovalov to win
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