Raonic Plays to Canada’s Davis Cup Victory

By Ben Hamill - September 19 2018

Canadian player Milos Raonic successfully took down Scott Griekspoor and secured a 3-1 win against the Netherlands during a Davis Cup game in Toronto on Sunday. His victory managed to propel his country back into the world group for 2019 as well, according to local reports.

For 25 years, the Canadian Davis Cup team was based around doubles star Daniel Nestor. However, there was a change of pace on Sunday as 46-year-old Nestor officially retired from international games, leaving Milos Raonic to take over his leadership role. 18-year-old Auger-Aliassime also went through his initiation on the day. Raonic managed to dispatch Griekspoor in three sets, giving Canada a strong win against the Dutch team in their Davis Cup world group qualification game. Raonic, who hails from Thornhill, Ontario, beat his aforementioned competitor 7-6, 6-3, and 6-4, playing his way to his second win of the five-match tie.

Player Hopes to Replace Nestor

Naturally, Nestor has left huge shoes to fill. However, Raonic, the world No. 20, hopes to become the next Canadian leader in the world of tennis. Commenting on this, Raonic added that even over the years, simply by being the team’s number one most of the time, he has ‘fallen into’ the role without necessarily even intending to. Nestor, he said, lightened things up, although Raonic did also mention that he has a very different approach than he does. When probed further, he simply said that he tends to stay more quiet than his peer does, often to his advantage. 

Canada in 2019 World Group Draw

The recent tie has earned Canada a firm position in the 2019 Davis Cup world group draw. The international men’s tennis contest will be undergoing a change in format next year, and the next opponent for the Canucks is not yet known. With that said, Captain Frank Dancevic is positive about what the future holds for the team now that Nestor has retired from it. According to the Captain, his team has proven this weekend how good they are, playing a tough team and coming out victorious. He also added that the more the team can have such strong players siding it, the better its chances of winning the entire Cup one day soon. On the other side of the coin, alternate player and rising star Auger-Aliassime endured some light hazing during an initiation rally with Nestor in just his underwear and shoes. Tennis Canada players and staff watched, laughed and cheered as Nestor teased the Montreal native, forcing him to run all over the hard court at the Toronto-based Coca Cola Coliseum.

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