Nakashima continues American march to Wimbledon with upset Shapovalov

LONDON, June 30 (Reuters) – Brandon Nakashima extended America’s charge at Wimbledon this year when he ousted last year’s semi-finalist Denis Shapovalov with a 6-2 4-6 6-1 7-6 victory (6) in the second round Thursday.

Nakashima became the seventh player from the United States to book a place in the third round of the grass-court Grand Slam this year with a guaranteed eighth place as Maxime Cressy and Jack Sock face off in an all-American battle.

Top-ranked American Taylor Fritz, John Isner, Jenson Brooksby, Tommy Paul, Steve Johnson and Frances Tiafoe are the others to have reached this stage – the most at a Grand Slam since the 1996 US Open and the most at Wimbledon in 27 years. .

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Nakashima, 20, ranked 56th in the world, hit 22 game winners while limiting his unforced errors to 14 to defeat Canadian southpaw Shapovalov.

“It was amazing there. Playing against such a top player on one of the biggest stages, it doesn’t get much better than that,” Nakashima said after his win. “Every game I think my game is progressing in the right direction.

“I learn a lot from these matches, win or lose. I think reaching the third round in Paris was important for my confidence.

“Just knowing that I could compete with these top players at the Grand Slam. Making the third round here is another step in the right direction.”

Shapovalov agreed, predicting a “bright future” for his opponent.

“He stayed extremely solid. It was very difficult to find weaknesses,” said the Canadian, who has now lost seven of his last eight games.

“He didn’t give me much to fish for. He was just playing a great game, serving well, coming back well. He played really well from the back. Yeah, I mean, it was hard for me to find a lot of solutions.”

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Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly; Editing by Ken Ferris

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