The first round of the cinch Championships concludes at Queens Club on Tuesday as the grass court season continues under what will be blue skies on a scorching hot day in the English capital, as those yet to make their bow in the event do so.
We saw three seeds bite the dust on the opening day of the competition on Monday so that will keep the five seeded players who take to the court on Tuesday on their toes. 10 matches take place across three courts on Tuesday.
The action begins on the main court with a former champion on show as Sam Querrey goes up against a vulnerable looking seed in Diego Schwartzman. When they are done we get to see the number one seed Casper Ruud for the first time this week when he takes on a home wildcard in the form of Ryan Peniston. The third match of the day is the tie of the first round as the two title winners from last week collide when the Nottingham winner Dan Evans meets the defending champion Matteo Berrettini. The action concludes with Frances Tiafoe going up against a Stan Wawrinka who is looking to make his way back to the top of the game.
There is a full schedule of singles action on the second court on Tuesday as well with the card beginning with the home qualifier Paul Jubb taking on Botic van de Zandschulp for a place in the second round. Once they are done the all action American player Jenson Brooksby is on show when he goes up against Filip Krajinovic before the lucky loser Denis Kudla, who has replaced Andy Murray in the field, meets Lorenzo Sonego. There is one seed on show on this court on Tuesday and it is the semi-finalist of a year ago in Denis Shapovalov. He meets Tommy Paul in a North American battle.
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The other singles court in action on Tuesday is Court 5. Those with a ground pass or access to the streams covering this court will see singles play for the one and only time this week and will see two qualifiers opening up the action when Quentin Halys takes on Emil Ruusuvuori, who had a good win over former champion Feliciano Lopez to make it into the draw. The other singles match on this court sees Francisco Cerundolo taking on Pedro Martinez.
Denis Shapovalov was a semi-finalist both here and at Wimbledon last season and I expect him to begin his London campaign this term with a fairly comfortable win over Tommy Paul for whom this isn’t his best surface. Both these men played on the European grass last week and lost in their first match which isn’t completely ideal but this surface is good for the Canadian with his serve a real weapon which he can carry plenty of confidence behind.
We saw on Monday just how awkward the leftie serve can be to face and there is more than a simple argument to be made that the Shapovalov serve has more on it than any of those we saw in singles action on the opening day. Paul is a good returner so that isn’t the issue but on this surface the Shapo serve can take him right out of the court and open up the point from there. I suspect the Canadian is quite at home here after his run to the last four last year. I think he can win with a bit in hand in this one.
Back D.Shapovalov (-2.5 games) to beat T.Paul for a 3/10 stake at 1.83 with Boylesports
Back him here: