Three wasn't the magic numer for the Canada's Denis Shapovalov as he bowed in the opening rounds of the last three tournaments. The Bett1HULKS championships, the Vienna Open and the Sofia Open weren't kind to the former NextGen and he withdrew from the Paris Masters and didn't qualify for the ATP Finals in London next month.
At the Sofia Open, he'd met Radu Albot and despite his blasting of 6 aces, the unforced errors and less than successful gamesmanship had him bow in straight sets. The recipe will have to be found for his once sparkling game next season when hopefully the Pandemic is at a low or will have disappeared.
Players may be able to have a slight regularity of competitive tournaments again and things for players including Shapovalov will go better.
But things were better for him at St. Petersburg, an event closest to his heart
Shapovalov had gotten to the quarterfinals and defeated with style the ATP iconic Stan Wawrinka in straight sets.
At Rome he put his skills to good use and won over Grigor Dimitrov in 3 tough sets. Earlier, he went the distance defeating Belgium's David Goffin and the former NextGen Taylor Fritz. The Canadian admits that his game has been quite a see-saw, which hasn't been much to his benefit.
Shapovoalov's US Open performance was phenomenal against Pablo Carreno Busta and he gained some continuity and won over him in a thrilling 5 setter. The Canadian says he was glad that there weren't any fans there because it might have been not in his favor since Carreno Busta is one of the favorite players there.
"My body felt good afte the singles and my body was ready to play doubles as well....I'm ready for anything ahead of me..." Shapovalov had said at the press conference. But he was a bit shocked most likely losing at openings in three tournaments.
He said "I knew it wouldn't be easy after a 6 month break...I didn't know where my game was at. I didn't play any exhibitions...It's not easy for the body," Shapovalov admitted. The hiatus didn't help at all his competive performances and hopefully he can gain some momentum at the start of a new and brighter season ahead.