Despite playing one of the best tennis matches of his life, untimely unforced errors cost Denis Shapovalov to a great extent. He lost the semifinal encounter against top seed Novak Djokovic in straight sets 6-7(3),5-7,5-7. An upset Shapovalov made a tearful exit from the centre court after his loss, thanking the crowd.
He later revealed that Djokovic came upto him in the locker room and consoled him. “He came up to me in the locker room. Told me he knows how difficult it is for me right now but that it’ll all come along. He doesn’t have to do it, it’s very nice from him to do it. He isn’t praised enough.”
In the post match press conference, Shapovalov expressed his disappointment and revealed how badly the loss hurt him.
“I think what hurt so much this time was just that I felt like the game is there and it’s possible to go and play for the trophy,” he said. “It’s a feeling I’ve never had before, so that’s why it just hurt so much. I felt like I was outplaying Novak in parts of the match. If you’re outplaying Novak, you can beat anyone.”
He added: “It just hurts a lot. Yeah, it’s been a long month. It’s been a long two weeks. It’s been a lot of pressure, a lot of mental fatigue. Like, it all kind of spilled out on the court before I could control myself.”
“Yeah, that’s all it was. But for sure there’s a lot of things to be proud for myself. For sure it’s almost good to have a little bit of a taste because it just makes me want it that much more going into the next slams and into the future. Now I know exactly what I’m capable of and where my game can be at. Also the things that I can improve, too, to beat Novak next time or go one step further. There’s a lot of positives. It’s a great two weeks.”
Shapovalov believes Berrettini could beat Djokovic in the final
The Canadian said: “For sure I think he does have a chance. I felt like from the back I was outplaying Novak a good portion of the match. I think Matteo is looking super solid from the back from what I have seen today and his match against Felix. He’s slicing a lot. It’s going to be uncomfortable for Novak.”
“I think with the serve that he has, if he can manage to sneak out a break here or there, win a couple tiebreaks, I think it’s going to be really tough for Novak to break him. If he’s serving the way he did today, it’s super tough to touch it.”
“Obviously Novak is such a good returner. Still, I mean, it’s too good. So I definitely do think he’s got a chance, for sure. It’s going to be super tough. But there’s always a chance, like I said before my match against Novak, and it’s the same thing with Matteo,” he concluded.