Denis Shapovalov Receives Wild Card

August 7, 2019 10:00 AM

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AUGUST 7, 2019) – The Winston-Salem Open at Wake Forest University has named Denis Shapovalov as its second Main Draw Singles Wild Card for the 2019 tournament, which will be held August 17 through 24 at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex adjacent to BB&T Field.  Competitors from the playing field acceptance list and wild cards now total 40 in the tournament’s 48-player singles draw.

“Many think it’s time for 20-year-old phenom Denis Shapovalov to secure his first career ATP World Tour singles title,” said Winston-Salem Open tournament director Bill Oakes.  “I think that’s a storyline worth watching at this year’s Winston-Salem Open, as the rising Canadian looks for his first career title.” 

Oakes added, “Denis is really excited about coming to Winston-Salem to help in his training for the US Open. He is looking for more matches and knows we have the perfect setup for his preparation—from our courts and balls that are the same as Flushing Meadows to the ease of getting around from our host hotel to the Wake Forest Tennis Complex.” 

Shaplovalov was born in Israel but moved to Canada as an infant.  He is currently ranked No. 32 after being as high as No. 20 back in April. Many in the professional tennis community expect Shapovalov to hit the top 10 eventually, perhaps soon.  Shapovalov acknowledges that he has become a crowd favorite wherever he plays, and much of that is because of his aggressive, free-wheeling style.

Shapovalov exploded onto the scene in Montreal in 2017 by defeating Juan Martin del Potro and Rafael Nadal. He continued his climb at the 2017 US Open, where he reached the fourth round with wins over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Kyle Edmund and 2018 Winston-Salem Open champion Daniil Medvedev. For his success in the last half of 2017, he was voted the ATP Newcomer of the Year and the ATP Most Improved Player.

Last year, he became the youngest player to reach the Top 25 since Richard Gasquet achieved that in 2005. This year, he has reached the semifinals at Miami and the fourth round at Indian Wells.

Additionally, Wake Forest University standouts Borna Gojo and Petros Chrysochos have both received qualifying Wild Cards for this year’s tournament.  A native of Croatia, Gojo completed his junior year in May and is a three-time singles all-American and 2018 NCAA Tournament singles finalist. Chrysochos became the second four-time singles All-American in school history this year. A Wake Forest graduate from Cyprus, Chrysochos was the 2018 NCAA singles champion.

In the Winston-Salem Open doubles field, Leander Paes and Jonathan Erlich will take the court with a Wild Card as well. Paes is a 46-year-old from India, currently ranked No. 71 in the doubles rankings. He owns 54 career ATP World Tour doubles titles and reached as high as No. 1 back in 1999. He won the 2013 Winston-Salem Open doubles title with Daniel Nestor. Erlich is a 42-year-old from Israel, currently ranked No. 102. He owns 21 career titles, including one earlier this year. He teamed up with Andy Ram to win the 2011 Winston-Salem Open doubles title.

To be among the first to be notified about additional wild card player announcements download the Winston-Salem Open official tournament app.  The app provides innovative ways to elevate the fan experience with instant access to draws and live scores, news and event information, and tickets.  The app also offers a way for fans to enjoy fun challenges and trivia and earn points to redeem for one-of-a-kind experiences and tournament merchandise.  

The official Winston-Salem Open app is available to download now in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.