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Monday Digest: Five Canadians Competing in Indian Wells – Tennis Canada

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Watching the Canadians compete in Indian Wells this week can serve as a bit of a March mental getaway for tennis fans. Not only do they get to watch some great tennis at the BNP Paribas Open, but they can enjoy the views of Tennis Paradise at the same time. 

Part one of the Sunshine Double kicks off this week with one of the biggest events on the 2024 calendar. Here’s what you need to know. 

In Case You Missed It: Strong Start for Stakusic 

Marina Stakusic made her long-awaited season debut last week at the WTA 500 event in San Diego, her first tournament since her Billie Jean King Cup breakout last fall. 

The young gun impressed in her first event of 2024, winning a pair of qualifying matches and then scoring her first match win at the WTA 500 level over Marina Melnikova in three sets. 

Her run came to an end in a hard-fought second-round match against No. 7 seed Donna Vekic in three sets. 

Leylah Annie Fernandez retired in her first-round match at the same event with a shoulder injury, but she does not appear likely to miss any time. 

Félix Auger-Aliassime, Denis Shapovalov, and Rebecca Marino competed in tour events last week but all lost in the first round. 

Click here for more news from the tours.

What to Watch: Canadians in Tennis Paradise 

All eyes will be on the Coachella Valley and Tennis Paradise for the first combined 1000-level event of the season starting this week in Indian Wells. 

Five Canadians are expected to be competing in Indian Wells: Félix Auger-Aliassime, Gabriela Dabrowski, Leylah Annie Fernandez, Milos Raonic, and Denis Shapovalov. 

The draw has not yet been released for the main draws, which get underway on Wednesday. Fernandez and Auger-Aliassime will both be seeded in singles. Dabrowski and Erin Routliffe will be the second seeds in the women’s doubles.  

It is the first ATP Masters 1000 event of the year and the third WTA 1000 tournament. 

Under the Radar: Shaw Gets on the Board 

Rob Shaw kept Canada’s title streak alive on the ITF tour last week by picking up his first title of 2024 at the Georgia Open wheelchair event. 

Shaw and partner Heath Davidson got a bit of revenge in the quad doubles final where they beat Andy Lapthorne and Gregory Slade of Great Britain 6-3, 3-6, 10-5. Lapthorne had knocked Davidson and Shaw out in the Australian Open semifinals with partner David Wagner.  

It is the 24th ITF doubles title for Shaw in his career. He won four titles each of the last two years.  

Photo : Rob Shaw

The victory should also help his bid to qualify for the 2024 Paralympics in Paris this summer. He currently sits ninth in the ITF quad rankings, which would be enough to clinch a spot in Paris. 

Read also: Everything You Need to Know About Paris 2024

There was a Canadian winner on the junior tour as well, with 16-year-old Zachary Plante winning the singles title at the J30 event in Addis Ababa. It’s the first ITF junior title of Pante’s career. 

Canadians Andrea Taylor and Finn Muller also reached finals at ITF junior events, but were both defeated. But in doubles, Taylor and fellow Canadian Anastasia Malysheva won the title at the J60 in Gjovik, Norway. 

Liam Draxl had his best performance of the year so far at an M25 event in Tucuman, Argentina, reaching the semifinals. 

Read also: Tennis Canada prioritizes mental health and wellness by unveiling pioneering Mental Health Strategy

Professional tennis lands in Canada this week with the first full ITF tournament of the year on Canadian soil taking place in Brossard, Quebec. It is the first edition of the new W15 event and will feature a large contingent from the host nation. 

Three Canadians, led by Ana Grubor, received direct entry to the singles main draw, with a further 16 competing in qualifying. 

There are lots of Canadians competing in ITF events all over the globe this week. 

You can follow the Canadians in action every week here.  

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