Shapovalov rues missed Djokovic chance

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2-min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

The scoreline might suggest otherwise but Denis Shapovalov says he knew how close he was to causing a major shock and knocking Novak Djokovic out in the Wimbledon semi-finals.

Five-time champion Djokovic admitted he had been outplayed at times by the 22-year-old Canadian who lit up Centre Court in his first grand slam semi-final.

But for a few crucial points here and there No.10 seed Shapovalov could have been planning for a Sunday showdown against Italian Matteo Berrettini.

Instead he wondered what might have been after falling 7-6 (7-3) 7-5 7-5.

The world No.12 looked crestfallen as he left the arena to a huge ovation and explained afterwards why the tears had flowed.

"I think what hurt so much this time was just that I felt like the game is there and it's possible to go and play for the trophy," Shapovalov said.

"It's a feeling I've never had before, so that's why it just hurt so much.

"I felt like I was outplaying Novak in parts of the match. If you're outplaying Novak, you can beat anyone.

"In terms of how I felt after the match, it sucked. I felt terrible. And I still do feel terrible.

"I felt like I had chances today. I felt like it could have gone my way. So the fact that it didn't, it's heartbreaking."

When Shapovalov needed five sets to beat German veteran Philipp Kohlschreiber in the first round here it lit the fuse for his best run at a grand slam.

He outclassed two-time Wimbledon champion Andy Murray in round three, then did the same to gritty Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut in the last 16.

On Wednesday he overcame Russian powerhouse Karen Khachanov in another five-setter.

But Djokovic proved a step too far.

"It's been a long month. It's been a long two weeks. It's been a lot of pressure, a lot of mental fatigue. It all kind of spilled out on the court," he said.

He said he would take great heart from his Wimbledon run, even if he fell just short of becoming only the second Canadian man to reach the final.

"For sure there's a lot of things to be proud for myself. For sure it's almost good to have a little bit of a taste because it just makes me want it that much more going into the next slams and into the future," he said.

"Now I know exactly what I'm capable of and where my game can be at. "If anything, this has made me more hungry to try to win a trophy."

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting