Denis Shapovalov avoids collapse, evens Davis Cup in 5-set thriller – CBC Sports

It went the limit, but Canada is still in it.

Denis Shapovalov narrowly defeated Yuki Bhambri 3-2 as Canada evened up its best-of-five Davis Cup tie against India at 1-1 on Friday night.

The Canadian teenager needed three hours 52 minutes to take the match, 7-6, 6-4, 6-7, 4-6, 6-1.

“It’s my first five-set match, for sure the longest I have been on the court,” Shapovalov said.

“It was a lot of tennis and a lot of ups and downs. I was able to regroup and start a new fresh page in the fifth and was able to play at a really high level at the end.”

Winning the first set 7-6 (2) in a tiebreaker, Shapovalov then turned on the jets and won the next set 6-4, before falling 7-6 (6) in the third and then 6-4 in the fourth.

He would bounce back in a big way during the pressure of the fifth set, however, emerging with a huge 6-1 victory. Shapovalov had 20 aces in the match, compared to only two for Bhambri.

Shapovalov wins to pull Canada even with India at Davis Cup1:03

Shapovalov is currently ranked 51st in the world, while Bhambri is 157th.

The 18-year-old Canadian phenom has been on quite the run this season, going 18-3 since Wimbledon, including wins over the likes of Rafael Nadal and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at the recent U.S. Open.

“It’s been a crazy last two months,” he said. “I have had a lot of success and playing some great tennis. I have a lot of confidence right now and it helps me to win tough matches like today. I believed in myself and stayed tough.”

It was a bit of vindication for Shapovalov, who in some ways caused the necessity of the tie with India when he slapped a loose ball in frustration and broke an orbital bone of chair umpire Arnaud Gabas during the deciding match of the series against Great Britain in February in Ottawa, getting banished as Canada lost 3-2.

In the early singles match, Brayden Schnur lost 3-1 to Ramkumar Ramanathan.

Match Wrap: Canada’s Brayden Schnur drops 1st Davis Cup match to India1:37

Schnur won the first set before dropping the next three. Ramanathan took the match 5-7, 7-6 (4), 7-5, 7-5.

The Canadian was making his first Davis Cup appearance on the indoor hard court at Northlands Coliseum, subbing in for the first singles match with Vasek Pospisil nursing a back injury.

“I thought I did a good job of not panicking, but there are moments where I wish I had given a little bit more energy to…

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