Anderson/Djokovic Oust Canadian Phenoms
It’s not often that the two most recent Grand Slam finalists compete on the same court in their very next match. But on Monday, that’s exactly the situation Kevin Anderson and Novak Djokovic found themselves in. The thing is, they weren’t playing against one another this time.
The two Top 10 players in the ATP Rankings had never played doubles together prior to walking on the National Bank Grandstand, and it showed, as they faced break point at 0-2 to go down an immediate double break. But from there, Anderson and Djokovic were extremely solid both from the baseline and at net, always managing to be in the right place at the right time to triumph after 67 minutes.
The South African and the Serbian are now a combined 103-131 in tour-level doubles matches, and they are both pursuing their second title in the discipline. Next, they will face a stiff test against third seeds and reigning Roland Garros champions Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut.
The clash was reminiscent of a first-round doubles match at the 2010 Rogers Cup, where young Canadians Milos Raonic and Vasek Pospisil played Djokovic and Rafael Nadal. But that time, the home favourites prevailed.
Did You Know?
All four players are in the singles draw in Toronto. Djokovic, fresh off his Wimbledon title, will play reigning Next Gen ATP Finals champion Hyeon Chung in the first round, while Anderson, who has a bye as the fourth seed, is set to battle Andrey Rublev or Evgeny Donskoy. Shapovalov will face Jeremy Chardy, and Auger-Aliassime will try to upset Lucas Pouille.