Canadians ousted from ATP Cup with loss to Germany

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MELBOURNE, Australia — Canada's run at the ATP Cup is over following its loss against Germany on Wednesday.

Denis Shapovalov fought to keep hope alive for the Canadians in a singles match against Alexander Zverev that went nearly three hours, but the German pulled through for the 6-7(5), 6-3, 7-6(4) victory to go up 2-0 in the best-of-three tie.

Earlier, Jan-Lennard Struff downed Milos Raonic of Thornhill, Ont., 7-6(4), 7-6(2) for the German sweep in singles action at the Australian Open tune-up tournament.

Canadians Steven Diez and Peter Polansky were scheduled to play the final of the three matches — a doubles showdown against Struff and Kevin Krawietz.

Canada was coming off an opening 2-1 loss to defending champion Serbia on Tuesday, setting up a winner-take-all match Thursday between the Germans and Serbians to win Group A and move on.

The inaugural ATP Cup was played last year in Brisbane, Perth and Sydney. But because of restrictions in place for the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 edition is being played entirely at Melbourne Park, site of the Australian Open, which starts Feb. 8.

This year the 12 teams have been divided into four pools for group stage, round-robin play. The four group winners will advance to the semifinals.

Group B consists of Spain, Greece and Australia. France, Austria and Italy make up Group C. And Group D consists of Russia, Argentina, Japan.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published February 2, 2021.

The Canadian Press