THE DRAWS ARE SET FOR THE FIRST GRAND SLAM EVENT OF THE SEASON
Tennis Canada – Montreal, January 11, 2018 – The draw ceremony was held on Wednesday night for the 2018 Australian Open with three Canadians, Eugenie Bouchard (Montreal, QC), Milos Raonic (Thornhill, ON), and Denis Shapovalov (Richmond Hill, ON) earning direct entry into the first Grand Slam of the season.
Raonic, seeded no. 22 in the men’s draw, will open against Slovakia’s Lukas Lacko, ranked no. 90 in the world. The Canadian made his return to the ATP Tour last week in Brisbane where he fell in the opening round to young Aussie Alex De Minaur. It will be the second meeting between the two players with Raonic winning their first match 6-3, 6-3 in Tokyo in 2013. Last year in Melbourne, Raonic reached the quarter-finals before falling to eventual finalist Rafael Nadal.
Joining Raonic in the men’s draw is Shapovalov who will be part of an intriguing Next Gen match in the opening round against 19-year-old Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece, ranked no. 80 in the world. Shapovalov, ranked no. 50 in the world, will be making his Australian Open main draw debut and although this will be his first encounter against Tsitsipas, the two met three times in in juniors with Shapovalov winning twice, including at Roland-Garros and Wimbledon in 2016. The 18-year-old Canadian won his first match of the season this week in Auckland before falling to Juan Martin Del Potro in round two.
On the women’s side, Bouchard will face world no. 87 Océane Dodin of France. Dodin has not played since the National Bank Cup in Quebec City last September where she was forced to withdraw because of health problems. Should Bouchard get past Dodin, she could meet World No. 1 Simona Halep in the second round. In 2017, Bouchard was defeated in Melbourne by American Coco Vandeweghe in the third round.
Meanwhile, Canadians Françoise Abanda (Montreal, QC), Frank Dancevic (Niagara Falls, ON), Peter Polansky (Thornhill, ON), and Vasek Pospisil (Vancouver, BC) are still alive in qualifying and will attempt to join their three compatriots in the main draw over the coming days.
About Tennis Canada
Founded in 1890, Tennis Canada is a non-profit, national sport association with a mission to lead the growth of tennis in Canada and a vision to become a world-leading tennis nation. We value teamwork, passion, integrity, innovation and excellence. Tennis Canada owns and operates the premier Rogers Cup presented by National Bank WTA and ATP World Tour events, eight professional ITF- sanctioned events and financially supports 15 other professional tournaments in Canada. Tennis Canada operates national junior training centres/programs in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. Tennis Canada is a proud member of the International Tennis Federation, the Canadian Olympic Committee, the Canadian Paralympic Committee and the International Wheelchair Tennis Association, and serves to administer, sponsor and select the teams for Davis Cup, Fed Cup, the Olympic and Paralympic Games and all wheelchair, junior and senior national teams. Tennis Canada invests its surplus into tennis development. For more information on Tennis Canada, please visit our website at www.tenniscanada.com and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
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