Milos Raonic into round of 16 at Western & Southern Open
Felix Auger-Aliassime loses to wildcard Tennys Sandgren
Milos Raonic advanced to the round of 16 at the Western & Southern Open before fellow Canadians Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov were eliminated on Monday.
The 15th-seeded Auger-Aliassime lost 6-7 (4), 6-2, 7-6 (5) to American wild-card entrant Tennys Sandgren, while the 12th-seeded Shapovalov fell 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-4 to German Jan-Lennard Struff.
Raonic, ranked 30th, rode his big serve to victory against the world No. 28.
The Canadian never faced a break point and won 89 per cent of his points on his first serve.
Raonic had 23 aces, 18 more than Evans.
WATCH | Raonic defeats Great Britain's Evans in straight sets:
Raonic will next face British wild-card entry Andy Murray, who upset fifth-seeded Alexander Zverev of Germany 6-3, 3-6, 7-5.
Montreal's Auger-Aliassime led 5-4 with serve in the third set before losing all four points in the ensuing game to put the match back on even terms.
In the tiebreak, Auger-Aliassime led 5-4 with serve before double-faulting and then making an unforced error. The 55th-ranked Sandgren then won on serve.
Sandgren, 29, was emotional throughout the match, often yelling at himself. It was in stark contrast to the 20-year-old Auger-Aliassime, who was far quieter.
It was a sloppy match, with Auger-Aliassime making 58 unforced errors, 13 more than Sandgren. The Canadian also double-faulted 15 times.
WATCH | Auger-Aliassime upset by United States' Sandgren:
Auger-Aliassime called it "a really bad day" in terms of his level.
In doubles play, Raonic and Auger-Aliassime dropped their round of 16 match to American Rajeev Ram and Britain's Joe Salisbury in a walkover.
Shapovalov, from Richmond Hill, Ont., lost his fourth match in a row against the 34th-ranked Struff.
The German broke Shapovalov in the final game of the match.
Normally held in Cincinnati, the Western & Southern Open is being played at the same site as the U.S. Open this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. No fans are in the facility.
WATCH | Shapovalov falls to Germany's Struff at Western & Southern Open:
Serena Williams avoids loss with perfect tiebreaker
Her yells of "Come on!" filling a stadium devoid of spectators, Serena Williams was pushed to the brink of a stunning loss in her longest match since 2012 before pulling away with a perfect tiebreaker and edging Arantxa Rus 7-6 (6), 3-6, 7-6 (0) Monday at the Western & Southern Open.
"I had a crowd in my head or something," Williams said with a laugh. "For me, it was like there was a crowd there."
Rus is a Dutch qualifier ranked No. 72 whose flat, left-handed strokes from the baseline gave Williams some trouble. Williams dropped four games in a row in the second set, then did so again in the third, when she fell behind 6-5.
Rus served for the match there and, at deuce, was two points from victory.
She wouldn't win another point. A double-fault gave Williams a break chance, and an errant groundstroke sent the match to the concluding tiebreaker.
Showing the strokes and grit that carried her to 23 Grand Slam titles — against an opponent who has never won so much as one tour-level singles title of any sort — Williams ran away with it, ending the 2-hour, 48-minute match with a forehand, celebrating most points with a yell and a clenched left fist.
With files from The Associated Press