In his triumphant return after a two-year injury hiatus, Milos Raonic showcased his formidable serve, propelling him to the upper echelons of tennis. The Canadian star exhibited his prowess as he triumphed over Frances Tiafoe with a score of 6-7(12), 7-6(4), 6-3 during the inaugural round of his home tournament on Monday.
Raonic, a former world number three who reentered the tour in June, impressively hammered his 37th ace on match point, much to the delight of the enthusiastic crowd. This victory paved the way for a second-round clash against Japan’s Toro Daniel. Follow the best tennis game ever with attractive betting odds from Nextbet.
After an extended absence from the sport and five years since his last appearance in Toronto, Raonic expressed his gratitude for the moment. He remarked, “All of these elements converged to create a remarkable night for me, and I am profoundly appreciative of it.”
The marathon-like first set culminated in a contentious moment when Tiafoe, while striving for a winner, accidentally grazed the net. Since Tiafoe’s contact occurred beyond the singles sticks, it wasn’t deemed a violation. Despite Raonic’s objections and the crowd’s boos, Tiafoe was awarded the point and the set.
Raonic retaliated in the second set breaker, exacting revenge on his ninth-seeded adversary. With an unreturnable serve that equalized the match at one set each, Raonic exuberantly clenched his fist in celebration.
In the third set, Raonic seized an early break and thwarted a break point in the match’s final game, cementing an emotional victory. This marked Raonic’s first appearance on his native soil since 2019, a sentiment that added to the depth of his triumph.
In parallel, Frenchman Gael Monfils dazzled the audience with a display of agility and skill. He conquered American Christopher Eubanks with a score of 7-6(3), 6-7(4), 6-1, progressing to the next round of the Canadian Open.
Monfils initially had match points at 6-5 in the second set, but Eubanks, whose impressive Wimbledon run caught the tennis world’s attention, managed to extricate himself from the predicament, setting the stage for another tiebreak. Eubanks admirably fought back from a 4-1 deficit in the second set breaker, drawing level with a flawless serve and volley in their inaugural encounter.
Nonetheless, Monfils seized control in the deciding set, breaking Eubanks in the opening game to establish an unassailable lead. A defining moment transpired when the 36-year-old Monfils, who had dealt with a wrist injury earlier in the year, sprinted across the court to execute a sublime passing shot, propelling himself to a commanding 4-1 lead. The ecstatic fans leaped from their seats as Monfils let out a triumphant roar.
Monfils’ next challenge is a second-round encounter with fourth-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas, who recently underwent a coaching change, transitioning from his father, Apostolos Tsitsipas, to Mark Philippoussis.
Among the players who progressed from the round of 64 on the first day of the Masters 1000 tournament were American Tommy Paul, Polish athlete Hubert Hurkacz, Italian talents Matteo Berrettini and Lorenzo Musetti, as well as Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina. Get the latest updates from the world of tennis only on Nextbet Sports.