Shapovalov Named 2017 Tennis Canada Male Player Of The Year

Shapovalov also named most improved and singles player of the year. Daniel Nestor is doubles player of the year. Felix Auger-Aliassime is junior player of the year. Female players of the year will be announced Tuesday.

Shapovalov Denis Shapovalov

TORONTO, December 4, 2017

Tennis Canada announced Monday that Denis Shapovalov has been named the country’s male player of the year following a superb breakout season that saw him finish as the youngest player in the Top 100 world rankings at No. 51. The 18-year-old has also been named most improved male player of the year and male singles player of the year, while Daniel Nestor is male doubles player of the year and Felix Auger-Aliassime is male junior player of the year.

A two-time former junior player of the year, Shapovalov started 2017 ranked world No. 250 and progressed through the season from the ITF Pro Circuit level to ATP Challengers to the ATP World Tour, peaking as high as world No. 49 and finishing at No. 51. He is one of the sport’s brightest young stars, becoming a household name with his incredible run to the semifinals on home soil at Rogers Cup presented by National Bank in Montreal.

“In a year full of surprises it’s somewhat fitting that my 2017 season concludes with another,” said Shapovalov. “I’m truly humbled to be recognized as Tennis Canada’s Male Player of the Year and to be given the opportunity to represent my country on the ATP Tour and as a member of our Davis Cup team. While much of the focus has been on my individual results, none of this would have been possible without the love and support of my family, coaches, management, and Canadian tennis fans.”

Among Shapovalov’s key achievements are:

  • Winning his first two career ATP Challenger titles at Drummondville and Gatineau
  • Becoming the youngest ever semifinalist at a Masters 1000 tournament including wins over then-world No. 2 Rafael Nadal and Juan Martin Del Potro at Rogers Cup in Montreal
  • Reaching the fourth round of the US Open as a qualifier and beating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga en route, making him the youngest male competitor to make the round of 16 at the US Open since Michael Chang in 1989 and the youngest to make the round of 16 at a Grand Slam since Marat Safin at 1998 Roland Garros
  • Hitting a career-high ranking of No. 49, becoming the youngest Top 50 debut since Rafael Nadal in 2004
  • Leading Canada to victory over India in the Davis Cup World Group play-offs with two singles wins in Edmonton
  • Playing in the first Laver Cup for Team World and qualifying for the inaugural ATP Next Gen Finals in Milan
  • Being named ATP Most Improved Player of the Year and ATP Star of Tomorrow

Nestor and Auger-Aliassime claim honours as well 

For the 15th time in his storied career, Canadian tennis legend Nestor has been named male doubles player of the year. Nestor, who has said he will retire in 2018, is currently ranked world No. 56. This season the 45-year-old made his 151st career ATP World Tour final, falling in the Montpellier championship match alongside Fabrice Martin. He also reached four other semifinals at Brisbane, Miami, Umag, and Tokyo. In Davis Cup, Nestor competed in his 50th and 51st ties, securing a key victory in Canada’s World Group play-off versus India with Vasek Pospisil.

Seventeen-year-old Auger-Aliassime is the male junior player of the year for the second consecutive season after sharing the honours with Shapovalov in 2016. Auger-Aliassime made his way on the pro circuit this year. He claimed his second career ITF Pro Circuit crown in Sherbrooke in March before winning the Lyon Challenger in France in June. With that victory at the age of 16 years and 10 months, he became the seventh-youngest player to win an ATP Challenger. He would add a second Challenger title in Seville, Spain in September, a triumph which made him the youngest player to debut in the Top 200 world rankings since Nadal in 2002. He is currently ranked world No. 162.

“Denis truly captured the hearts of Canadian sports fans this year, and it has been a joy to watch him grow into a budding star,” said Michael Downey, president and CEO, Tennis Canada. “He has the spirit, desire, and work ethic to be among the elite athletes in our sport and we look forward to seeing what’s next for him. It is also an honour to recognize Daniel and Felix for their great efforts and results; our winners this year represent both the longstanding pillar of Canadian tennis in Daniel and a bright future with Denis and Felix. Congratulations to all on your well-deserved success and best of luck next season.”

The Tennis Canada Excellence Awards are selected by a committee comprised of high-ranked Tennis Canada personnel and the country’s top national coaches. The 2017 female recipients will be announced on Tuesday.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Year Male Player of the Year Female Player of the Year
1982 Rejean Genois Marjorie Blackwood
1983 Glenn Michibata Carling Bassett
1984 Martin Wostenholme Carling Bassett
1985 Glenn Michibata Carling Bassett
1986 Andrew Sznajder Helen Kelesi
1987 Grant Connell Helen Kelesi
1988 Andrew Sznajder Jill Hetherington
1989 Andrew Sznajder Helen Kelesi
1990 Grant Connell Helen Kelesi
1991 Grant Connell Patricia Hy
1992 Grant Connell Patricia Hy
1993 Greg Rusedski Patricia Hy
1994 Sebastien Lareau Jana Nejedly
1995 Grant Connell Patricia Hy-Boulais
1996 Sebastien Lareau Patricia Hy-Boulais
1997 Daniel Nestor Patricia Hy-Boulais
1998 No record of award No record of award
1999 No record of award No record of award
2000 Daniel Nestor & Sebastien Lareau Sonya Jeyaseelan
2001 Daniel Nestor Jana Nejedly
2002 Frederic Niemeyer Maureen Drake
2003 Daniel Nestor Maureen Drake
2004 Daniel Nestor Aleksandra Wozniak
2005 Daniel Nestor Stephanie Dubois
2006 Frank Dancevic Aleksandra Wozniak
2007 Daniel Nestor Stephanie Dubois
2008 Daniel Nestor Aleksandra Wozniak
2009 Daniel Nestor Aleksandra Wozniak
2010 Daniel Nestor Rebecca Marino
2011 Milos Raonic Rebecca Marino
2012 Milos Raonic Aleksandra Wozniak
2013 Milos Raonic Eugenie Bouchard
2014 Milos Raonic Eugenie Bouchard
2015 Milos Raonic Eugenie Bouchard
2016 Milos Raonic Eugenie Bouchard
2017 Denis Shapovalov TBA