The National Bank Open, formerly Rogers Cup

Diallo shines

August 6, 2022
Gabriel Diallo celebrates

Patrice Lapointe/Tennis Canada

On Saturday, the qualifying event of the National Bank Open presented by Rogers got underway at IGA Stadium in Montréal, the site of the men’s Masters 1000 tournament.

Six Canadians were in action in the opening round, but only one advanced to the last matches on Sunday.

To everyone’s surprise, 20-year-old Gabriel Diallo of Montréal outclassed his ranking of No.695 and defeated James Duckworth (4) of Australia 6-3, 7-6 (5) in 91 minutes.

Though they all fought hard, his five countrymen weren’t as successful. Juan Carlos Aguilar, who lost 6-3, 6-7 (8), 6-4 to Arthur Rinderknech (6), came close to causing the second upset of the day. The same goes for veteran Steven Diez, who fell to Alexei Popyrin of Australia 6-3, 7-6 (4).

Up against seeded players, Jaden Weekes, Kelsey Stevenson and Liam Draxl left the court after two sets.

Top seeds Marcos Giron and Fabio Fognini made it through the first round without a hitch.

The only other real surprise of the day came when No.58 Joao Sousa (3) of Portugal was sent packing by Marc-Andrea Huesler of Switzerland (6-3, 7-6 [2]). Although Sousa is largely a clay court player.

In addition to the final round of the qualifying event and the seven matches, Sunday’s program features some of the world’s best on the practice courts, including Stan Wawrinka, Jannik Sinner and Denis Shapovalov. The training sessions begin at 9 a.m., and the matches start at 11.

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