Prajnesh Gunnewaran shocks Denis Shapovalov in Stuttgart

Jun 14, 2018, 09:23 IST | PTI

Prajnesh, who had won the decisive fifth rubber against Yibing Wu in the Davis Cup tie against China, has been in good nick in the last few months, winning his maiden ATP Challenger tournament

Prajnesh Gunnewaran shocks Denis Shapovalov in Stuttgart
Representational picture

Indian Davis Cupper Prajnesh Gunnewaran yesterday earned the biggest win of his career by stunning world number 23 Denis Shapovalov in the opening round of the ATP Mercedes Cup in Stuttgart. The left-handed Indian shocked the Canadian sixth seed 7-6(6) 2-6 6-3 in the opening round of the Euro 729,340 grass court event.

"I knew I had a chance to win. Today, I played more aggressive than I normally do. That is the biggest factor of my win," Prajnesh said after the match. "I did not know how good he is in the sense that I had not played him before. I did not know how much me playing aggressive would do damage him. I had a chance and I said all right I would play as aggressive as I could and it worked. I am happy that it happened," said Prajnesh who was playing in his maiden ATP World Tour event. Explaining his win further, Prajnesh said, "It was a close match. I won the first game in tie break. There was a small margin of error. In the third game I broke him early and I played a good game and he made a few errors."

Prajnesh, who had won the decisive fifth rubber against Yibing Wu in the Davis Cup tie against China, has been in good nick in the last few months, winning his maiden ATP Challenger tournament. Two days back, he touched his career-best rank of 169 in singles. He next faces Argentina's world number 75 Guido Pella and may run into legendary Roger Federer in the quarter-finals. The Indian singles player have made their presence felt on the Tour with their big wins, of late. Yuki Bhambri had got the better of world number 12 Lucas Pouille in March at the Indian Wells Masters. In August 2017, Bhambri had beaten World No. 22 and Citi Open defending champion Gael Monfils and in June 2017, Ramkumar Ramanathan had knocked out then world number eight Dominic Thiem, who ended as runner-up to Rafael Nadal at recently concluded French Open.

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