Canada came through the Group Stage in Valencia in September with victories over Spain and Korea, Rep. as well as a defeat to Serbia. Then, in the Final 8 they faced down Germany in the quarter-final and Italy in the semi-final to set up a final clash with Australia ending in a history-making 2-0 victory.
Here are 10 things you may not know about the new Davis Cup champions:
1. This is the first time that Canada have won the Davis Cup. Ever:
Before that, the best the Canadians had achieved was a place in the first new-look format Finals in 2019, falling to Spain in the final in Madrid. Before that there were two semi-final places – 100 years apart – in 1913, the first year they played in the competition, losing to the United States; and in 2013, when they were beaten by Serbia.
2. Felix Auger-Aliassime is having the season of his career:
The 22-year-old, who beat players including world No.1 Carlos Alcaraz in the Group Stage in September and Australia’s Alex de Minaur in the final in Malaga, is having a breakout season in 2022. He is currently at a career-high ranking of world No.6 and this year racked up a 16-match winning streak taking three ATP titles in three weeks in Florence, Antwerp and Basel.
3. Auger-Aliassime has already made history:
At the US Open in 2021, Auger-Aliassime became the first Canadian men’s singles semi-finalist in the tournament's history – that's since 1881.
4. Denis Shapovalov is not to be outdone on the history front:
Current world No.18 Denis Shapovalov became the second man in Canadian tennis history, after Milos Raonic, to break into the world top 10.
5. FAA and DS have been a fearsome combination for some time:
Auger-Aliassime and Shapovalov combined to exceptional effect in 2015 to win the Junior Davis Cup for Canada, defeating Germany, Russia and Japan in the finals.
6. And let’s not forget Vasek Pospisil:
The 32-year-old, who played in the Group Stage and Final 8 in 2022, debuted for Canada in the Davis Cup in 2008. In the first new-look format Finals of 2019, he played in every singles and doubles match in every tie up to and including the semi-finals – that’s eight matches in six days.
7. And Pospisil has accolades of his own:
An experienced player, Pospisil took the Wimbledon men’s doubles title alongside the USA's Jack Sock in 2014.
8. Behind every great team is a great captain:
Frank Dancevic has been at the helm of the Canadian Davis Cup team since taking over in 2017. He steered the team to the final in 2019 where they were defeated by Spain in Madrid.
9. Support from the sidelines:
Although they didn’t play in the Final 8, Auger-Aliassime, Shapovalov and Pospisil were supported by two more players: 23-year-old Alexis Galarneau and 21-year-old Gabriel Diallo. Galarneau and Diallo both took to the court against Serbia in the Group Stage in Valencia, with Canada losing 2-1 to Viktor Troicki’s men.
10. Teammates and rivals:
Felix Auger-Aliassime and Australia's Alex de Minaur, although rivals in the Davis Cup final, were on the same winning Team World side in the Laver Cup in September with Auger-Aliassime taking his first victory against Novak Djokovic.
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