Roland-Garros: Rune’s first Grand Slam win, over Shapovalov, is “huge step forward”
Danish 19-year-old Holger Rune caused the biggest upset so far on the men’s side at Roland-Garros with a straight-set win over 14th seed Denis Shapovalov
The 19-year-old Rune, already ranked No 40 in the world, needed exactly two hours to score a 6-3, 6-1, 7-6 (7-4) win over the left-handed Canadian, who is now 2-4 lifetime at Roland-Garros.
In difficult, breezy conditions, Shapovalov was guilty of making far too many unforced errors, 53 in all, and Rune took full advantage, always forcing the Canadian to play an extra ball.
Rune had a match point while serving for the match at 5-4 in the third set only to see Shapovalov fight back to 5-5 and then saved a set point at 5-6 before winning the tiebreak for his first ever Grand Slam win.
“I think it’s nice,” a beaming Rune told reporters. “This is what you work for every day to be able to play the biggest tournaments. And to play these kind of players like Denis also is great for me. It’s amazing level.
“I’m super happy and pleased to be, you know, in this position right now. To be able to have chances against these guys, to be able to, you know, win my first title in Munich was a huge step forward in my career.
“I’m really positive and working hard every day to get better.”
A former top-ranked junior and boys champion at Roland-Garros, Holger Rune picked up his first ATP singles title in Munich last month and also reached the semi-finals in Lyon last week.
He will meet Swiss Henri Laaksonen in the second round on Thursday.
Shapovalov: “I didn’t show up”
Shapovalov admitted he’d had a bad day at the office.
“I didn’t really show up today, so it’s a little bit difficult,” he said. “Of course, Holger is playing some great tennis, won his first title, semis last week, I believe, pushing some top guys. So yeah, for sure not taking anything away from him, obviously he’s playing great tennis.
“But I think against most players today I wouldn’t come out the winner. So, yeah, a little bit frustrating on my side and just feel like I need to improve some things. Be sure that I’m ready for the slams.”
Paris (Grand Slam): Other first-round results (Stade Roland-Garros, clay, EUR 43.600.000)
- Lorenzo Sonego (32) beat Peter Gojowczyk: 6-2, 6-2, 6-1
- David Goffin beat Jiri Lehecka: 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4
- Cristian Garin beat Tommy Paul (30): 5-7, 6-1, 6-2, 6-3
- Henri Laaksonen beat Pedro Martinez Portero: 2-6, 6-4, 6-4, 7-6 
- Casper Ruud beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga: tuesday
- Richard Gasquet beat Lloyd George Harris: 6-1, 6-3, 6-4
- Alexander Bublik beat Arthur Rinderknech: 6-2, 6-4, 6-4
- Sebastian Korda (27) beat John Millman: 6-1, 7-5, 7-6 
- Alex Molcan beat Federico Coria: 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3
- Ilya Ivashka beat Benoit Paire: 6-3, 7-5, 1-6, 7-5
- Laslo Djere beat Ricardas Berankis: 6-4, 6-4, 6-4
- Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune beat Denis Shapovalov (14): 6-3, 6-1, 7-6 
- João Sousa beat Chun-Hsin Tseng (Q): 6-7 , 6-1, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4
- Emil Ruusuvuori beat Ugo Humbert: 6-2, 2-6, 6-7 , 6-4, 6-2
- Daniil Medvedev (2) beat Facundo Bagnis: 6-2, 6-2, 6-2