Rising Canadian star Denis Shapovalov hasn't had a great start to the clay season and he believes it's a mental thing and that he is low on confidence. Shapovalov, who was seeded at No. 1 in the Estoril Open main draw, had a first round bye at the tournament before he faced fellow rising star Corentin Moutet on Thursday.
Shapovalov ended up losing his opener in Estoril as Moutet won 6-4 2-6 6-4. "I don’t know, I have to go back and just speak with the team because my game is there but when I’m going out to the match it’s not coming out and it’s a mental issue more than anything else, because I’m practicing very good and at a very high level, and I’m just not able to bring that level out in the matches,” Shapovalov said after losing to Moutet, per Tennis Majors.
Shapovalov wanted to be aggressive against Moutet
"I’m always trying to be aggressive but I don’t think I was aggressive enough,” he said, “and I was just like doubting myself a lot on those shots and that’s why I’m missing, I’m like half-committing to coming in, half-committing to staying back, so I’m a little bit confused out there and that’s why there were so many mistakes”.
Shapovalov kicked off his clay season last week at the Barcelona Open. Shapovalov beat Jeremy Chardy in his Barcelona opener before suffering a straight-set loss to fellow compatriot Felix Auger-Aliassime. “I think it’s just more of a confidence thing,” Shapovalov said.
“When I’m confident, I’m not doubting myself and I’m able to go. Right now I haven’t had so many matches so, I’m a little bit, like, rusty, on whether I want to come in or whether I want to stay back.
But I don’t think it makes a difference on the clay or not, again it’s more of a thing within myself”.