Players have been living dangerously in Montreal with the likes of Gael Monfils and Diego Schwartzman, among many others, needing to save match points en route to some heroic victories.
Monfils pulled off a near-impossible back-from-the-brink job against Kei Nishikori, saving four match points – including two with unthinkable hot shots – en route to a 6-7 (4), 7-5, 7-6 (6) triumph to reach the last 16.
The Frenchman was 0-3 against Nishikori heading into the contest, with all their previous encounters going the distance.
Against the fifth-seeded Japanese on Wednesday, Monfils broke back when Nishikori was serving for the match, then rallied from 3-6 down in the final-set tiebreak to secure a memorable victory.
Watch these two hot shots he needed to save match points…
“It’s a good victory for many reasons,” Monfils was quoted as saying by www.atpworldtour.com. “It’s a big revenge, because last year around this time I had the same thing actually against Kei. I was up 6/2 in the tiebreak in the Olympics in the quarter-finals and I lost the tie-break. So I know exactly what he feels.
“Actually last year, as well, a bit before, I played him in Miami. I also had five match points and I lost it 7-6 in the third. I’m more than happy because I fought through the toughness, because it was tough for me. It was a bit like a rollercoaster. I was a break down in each set.”
Monfils wasn’t the only one to come back from the dead on Wednesday in Canada. No4 seed Alexander “Sascha” Zverev powered through a 49-shot rally to save match point against France’s Richard Gasquet before wrapping up a 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (3) victory. He saved three match points in total to set up a mouth-watering third round with Nick Kyrgios.
Feast your eyes on this match point save from Zverev.
YOUNG AND FEARLESS
A day earlier, 18-year-old wildcard Denis Shapovalov saved four match points during his 4-6, 7-6(8), 6-4 win over Rogerio Dutra Silva to reach the second round (he then beat Juan Martin del Potro in straight sets on Wednesday). The powerful Canadian lefty is a skillful shot-maker. Check out how he saved those match points…
Also on Tuesday, but in the second round, Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman upset No. 3 seed Dominic Thiem by saving four match points. The world No36 completed a 4-6, 7-6 (7), 7-5 win over Thiem, who was up 5-2 in the final set but blew his lead. Schwartzman plays Jared Donaldson in the third round on Thursday. Check out the highlights from his heroic win over Thiem.