Donaldson downs Pouille in Montreal, Del Potro ends Isner winning streak

Jared Donaldson took his impressive 2017 campaign to additional heights when he knocked out Lucas Pouille 7-6(5), 7-6(8) in the Rogers Cup first round on Monday. Donaldson fired 10 aces and won 80 percent of his first-serve points before advancing in one hour and 58 minutes.

The 20-year-old American is currently seventh in the race to the NextGen ATP Finals in Milan.

“I feel like there’s a lot of great [up-and-coming] players playing right now,” Donaldson said. “I’m just honored to be one of them. It’d be nice to make it and compete with those great guys. They all play so well, and I feel lucky to be a part of it and hopefully I can qualify for it.”

Fellow American Reilly Opelka, 19, has a ton of work to do if he wants a berth in Milan and his Monday result will not help his chances. Opelka showed signs of posting a comeback victory over Diego Schwartzman, but he eventually succumbed to the Argentine 6-3, 6-7(2), 6-4 in two hours and nine minutes.

While Schwartzman and Opelka made things interesting on the court, the matchup itself was even more notable. It marked one of the most extreme size differences in ATP Tour history, as Opelka registers at 6’11” and Schwartzman stands at just 5’7”.

Speaking of big men, recent Newport and Atlanta champion John Isner lost to Juan Martin Del Potro 7-5, 7-5. Isner crushed 24 aces but he was broken twice and failed to generate a single break opportunity against the Del Potro serve. Donaldson, Schwartzman, and Del Potro are joined in the second round by Nick Kyrgios, whose injury problems may be a thing of the past. The 24th-ranked Australian turned in a convincing performance to destroy Viktor Troicki 6-1, 6-2 in just 50 minutes.

“I’ve been struggling the last couple months with a bunch of things,” Kyrgios reflected. “I just have to keep doing the right things. I’m getting a lot of treatment, trying to do my rehab every day. I’m doing everything I can.”

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