Branstine falls short in a tight 3 set match
Peter Polansky (Thornhill, ON) and Denis Shapovalov (Richmond Hill, ON) both advanced to the quarter-finals following their victories on Thursday in Gatineau. The tournament features a mixed draw, with the men competing in the $75,000 ATP Challenger event and the women competing in the $25,000 ITF Challenger event. The tournament will be held from July 17 to 23 at Parc de l’Île in Gatineau.
In his second round singles match on Thursday, Peter Polansky took on American qualifier JC Aragone. After dropping the first set, the Canadian worked his way back to even out the match by breaking his opponent twice in the second set. Polansky continued to build off his momentum and ran away with the decisive set, taking the match 3-6, 6-3, 6-1. He will face another American qualifier Marcos Giron in the quarter-finals on Friday.
After his come from behind win, Polansky was back in action on Centre Court, this time playing in the doubles quarter-finals with compatriot Philip Bester (Vancouver, BC). The Canadian pair were the fourth seeds in the doubles draw, but were unable to overcome the American pair of Bradley Klahn and Jackson Withrow.
Denis Shapovalov was also in action on Thursday, playing in the last match of the day against Max Purcell of Australia. The Canadian made quick work of his match, winning 6-1, 6-2 in a little over an hour. Shapovalov, the tournament’s seventh seed, tallied two aces and eight double faults on his way to a spot in the quarter-finals. He will face the second seed Thomas Fabbiano on Friday afternoon.
Carson Branstine (Orange, CA) was the only Canadian playing in the women’s draw on Thursday. She had the tough task of facing the tournament’s seventh seed Sarah-Rebecca Sekulic of Germany. The 16-year-old Canadian put up a valiant effort against her more experienced opponent, but ultimately fell 7-6(3), 3-6, 6-4. Although she fired five aces in the match, Branstine also committed six double faults. She will play next in the Granby National Bank Challenger, where she received a main draw wild card.
Thursday was a good day for qualifiers, as three players who reached the main draw through qualifying ousted some of the tournament’s top seeds. On the men’s side, American qualifier Marcos Giron upset Go Soeda (no.4). In the women’s draw, Samantha Murray ousted the top seed Olivia Rogowska of Australia and Marcela Zacarias of Mexico eliminated American Danielle Lao, the second seed.
The Gatineau National Bank Challenger is the first of two mixed draw tournaments held in Quebec during the month of July. The tournament will be followed by the Granby National Bank Challenger.
Feature photo: Guy Deschênes