Fixture: (7) Denis Shapovalov vs Lloyd Harris
Date: 4 September 2021
Tournament: 2021 US Open
Round: Third round (Round of 32)
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York
Category: Grand Slam
Surface: Outdoor hardcourt
Prize money: $40,560,000
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel & ESPN/ESPN 2 | UK - Amazon Prime Video | India - Star Sports / Disney+ Hotstar VIP
Denis Shapovalov vs Lloyd Harris preview
Seventh seed Denis Shapovalov takes on South Africa's Lloyd Harris in the third round of the 2021 US Open on Saturday.
Shapovalov has had an up-and-down year, with the highlight being his first ever Grand Slam semifinal at Wimbledon. The Canadian bowed out to eventual champion Novak Djokovic in the last four, but not before giving the Serb a tough fight.
Shapovalov suffered a let-down after that, losing three matches on the trot. But he has bounced back well at Flushing Meadows, reaching the third round by defeating Federico Delbonis and Roberto Carballes Baena in straight sets.
Harris, much like his opponent, has had a breakthrough season. The South African has registered a win-loss record of 22-17 for the year, and reached a career-high ranking of World No. 47.
Harris picked up high-profiles wins over the likes of Dominic Thiem, Stan Wawrinka, Grigor Dimitrov and Rafael Nadal earlier in the year. At Flushing Meadows, the 24-year-old won a hard-fought five-set battle against Karen Khachanov in the first round, before registering a straightforward victory over Ernesto Escobedo in the second.
Denis Shapovalov vs Lloyd Harris head-to-head
The third-round encounter in New York is the second match between the two players, and Lloyd Harris currently leads the head-to-head 1-0 over Denis Shapovalov.
The South African defeated Shapovalov 6-7 (5), 6-4, 7-6 (6) in the semifinals of the Dubai event earlier this year.
Denis Shapovalov vs Lloyd Harris prediction
Denis Shapovalov's power-packed game is well-suited to the quick conditions in New York, and he will be keen to mount a deep run this fortnight. But given the year he has had, Lloyd Harris will be brimming with confidence and ready to take down yet another big name.
The 24-year-old's serving numbers have been terrific, aided by an unconventional ball toss that is almost impossible to read. He has also been in good rhythm off the ground, with his forehand in particular doing a lot of damage.
Shapovalov on his part has historically been shaky when put under pressure, and Harris would be looking to pounce on any lapses he suffers. The better returner on the day may have the edge, and nerves could also play a role if the two big-servers go into one or more tiebreakers.
That said, the Canadian still has a lot more experience on the big stage. That, coupled with his power and shotmaking abilities, makes him a slight favorite.
Prediction: Denis Shapovalov to win in four sets.