By Dominique Cambron-Goulet
(August 11, 2013) MONTREAL – The last week was full of emotions at Montreal ATP Masters 1000. The great performances of Canadians Vasek Pospisil and Milos Raonic made of this year’s tournament one of the most memorable here in Montreal.
The final might not have been as exciting as the semifinals tennis-wise, it will be remembered for sure by both players. “It’s always special for me to play in Montreal, because I won my first tournament on hard here in 2005”, said Rafael Nadal right after the match.
Raonic will also remember what he qualified as a “stepping stone” of his young career. “The standing ovation I received when I entered the court was the best moment of my career”, he said with a trembling tone in news conference. It’s also with the runner-up points that he’ll become the first Canadian to ever figure in the singles top-10.
The fans, will never forget the emotions provided by the matches of six Canadians in the main draw, the Andy Murray’s upset on his first appearance after Wimbledon and the two third set tiebreakers semifinals, including an all-Canadian one.
The 2013 Montreal Masters had lots of world premieres, upsets and crowned a winner that wasn’t expected at the beginning of the American hard court season. We’ll see if Cincinnati and the US Open will bring us their share of records and milestones as well.
– John Isner’s loss against Vasek Pospisil knocked the Americans out of the top-20 for the first in history of rankings.
– Due to his presence in final, Milos Raonic is the first Canadian to get in the top-10 in history of rankings.
– Vasek Pospisil climbed up 31 ranks with his presence in semifinal to reach 40th place.
– Rafael Nadal wins four Masters in a year for the second time of his career. He has three tournaments left to even Novak Djokovic’s record of five titles in a year.
“To win here, I have to be playing my top level. Very happy the way that I played almost every match in this tournament,” Nadal said. “Is very important for me, this title. Just very happy for everything.”
“I feel I have an advantage, but not enough to say that I am the favorite, Nadal said of his his lead in the ATP race for the year-end top ranking. “On this kind of surface, Novak is really good. [There] remains three Masters 1000s, one Grand Slam, [Barclays ATP World Tour Finals] – more favorable surfaces for him than for me. So we are talking about 6,500 points.
“We have to realize how many points I have to win to be No. 1. I think I will not be No. 1 if I have less than 10,000 points at the end of the season. Today I have 8,000. I need to win minimum 2,000 more. That’s very difficult in this part of the season, but I’m going to try.”
Dominique Cambron-Goulet has been teaching tennis for ten years and is now a journalist in Montreal.
Photos by Marc-André Gauthier