Denis Shapovalov needed just 72 hours and a change of venue to clear his head on a clay court, with the 11th seed advancing in his Sunday opening match at the Madrid Masters.
The 11th-seeded Canadian shook off his Thursday defeat as top seed in the Estoril opening round, starting afresh in Madrid with 6-1, 6-3 success over Dusan Lajovic.
“I definitely felt a lot better today, I felt very good on the court.,” Shapovalov said. “I’m just happy to get the first win.”
Shapovalov will face off in the second round on the clay of the Caja Magica against Alexander Bublik, who put out Marton Fucsovics 7-6(5), 6-3.
The Canadian, youngest semi-finalist in Madrid history at age 19 in 2018, was pleased to get his clay game back into rhythm so quickly
“Obviously not much can change in the span of a couple of days, but Madrid is a place where I have had a lot of success, from back in juniors, semis here in the Masters and finals of Davis Cup.
“It’s a place where it feels like home to me and/ When I’m out on the court here, I do feel a little bit more comfortable.
“Today I wasn’t thinking too much. I was able to just play my
game and have that same feeling from (2019) Davis Cup.(final against Spain)
“I hope it continues, hopefully I can stay this way for the next match.”
Main photo:- Denis Shapovalov sporting a bandana in Madrid – by ATPTour.com