Felix Auger-Aliassime, of Canada, will be one of the crowd favorites at the Rogers Cup in Montreal. (AP Photo/Jim Rassol)
Felix Auger-Aliassime, of Canada, will be one of the crowd favorites at the Rogers Cup in Montreal. (AP Photo/Jim Rassol)|Associated Press

Rogers Cup Tennis Tuesday: Abrams recaps Monday men's action and looks at 1st Round matches in Montreal

Matches start at noon EDT.

Neal Abrams

Neal Abrams

The Rogers Cup

Montreal, Canada

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Men’s First Round

The dog days of summer are here, and shortly we’ll look back at what’s going on on the big courts in Montreal with a wanderlust of sorts, as Atlanta is over, Washington, D.C. is over, and after the Masters 1000 tournament here in Montreal all we have to look forward to is Cincinnati and then New York City for the 2019 U.S. Open.

The Rogers Cup, being played now in Montreal, Canada, is the pride and joy of Canadian Tennis, and the event is another jewel of the summer. Our neighbors up north spare nothing hosting this incomparable event, and do a wonderful job hosting the professional tennis world, as the Juniors compete for their own little gold ball in Kalamazoo. Frankly, those who have competed in both tournaments say that the National Juniors and Boys 16 in Kalamazoo takes place with the same vigor and prestige as the professional tournament.

With players flying in from D.C., from Mexico, from Northern California, and from Austria, a lot of the unseeded competitors started their tournament Monday, which lets the seeds unfurl their tired legs and empty arms on Tuesday. In matches that have already been completed, fan favorite Nikoloz Basilashvili beat Dusan Lajovic 3-6, 6-4, 6-4, Canadian homeboy Milos Raonic topped Lucas Pouile 6-4, 6-4, Spanish clay court specialist RBA knocked off Aussie toker Bernie Tomic 3 and 2, Brit Cam Norrie toppled Marton Kucsovics 6-3 in the third, Yankee Tommy Paul ran all over Canadian Brayden Schnur 1 and 2, German Jan-Lennard Struff put Frenchman Jo-Willie Tsonga out of his misery, 6-2, 6-2, and Swiss #2 Stan Wawrinka knocked off Grigor Dimitrov 4 and 4. Adrian Mannarino and Cristian Garin also came away with straight set wins over Mikhail Kukushkin and Laslo Djere, respectively.

That leaves the Men’s draw offering matches featuring Marin Cilic, 18-year-old Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime, D.C. champion Nick Kyrgios, third seeded Sascha Zverev, 12th seeded John Isner, 15th seeded David Goffin squaring off against Guido Pella, 11th seeded Borna Coric against Peter Gojo, and a wonderful first round match between Basilashvili, seeded13th, against the tough German Jan-Lennard Struff. The Canadians will be thrilled if they hang around, as they will be able to watch Brit Dan Evans take on Aussie Alex “The Demon” de Minaur, and Spaniard Feliciano Lopez will test his skills against lucky loser John Millman, while Taylor Fritz plays Hubert Hurkacz and Diego Schwartzman showcases his fight against Marco Cecchinatto. The night and day calendar concludes with an appealing matchup between Gilles Simon and Moldavian Rado Albot.

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