— Félix AugerAliassime (@felixtennis) March 13, 2017
Back in 2014, Eugenie Bouchard became the very first Canadian player, man or woman, to make the final of a Grand Slam in Singles. Even though she ended up getting clobbered by Petra Kvitova in the showpiece final, she had given Canadian tennis reason to feel optimistic about the future.
Since 2014, though, Bouchard has never really been the same player that propelled her towards that Wimbledon final. But when one reason to rejoice was taken away from Canada, they were given another one in the form of Milos Raonic. Raonic made the semi-finals at the Australian Open in 2016 and the final at Wimbledon in 2016 which included a roller-coaster 5-set victory for Milos over Roger Federer in the semi-final.
Bouchard and Raonic surely look like the present and the past of Canadian hope. The future however features other names, including the likes of Denis Shapovalov and young Felix Auger-Aliassime.
Felix has been talked about for a while now as being a potential star but made his most serious mark yet on the tennis world last week when at the age of 16 years and 10 months, he bagged the Lyon Challenger and became the youngest male tennis player to win a Challenger since Bernard Tomic in 2009. With so many “Next Gen” players making their mark in the ATP, Felix Auger-Aliassime might just be the next kid on the block.
Good time to change my ATP profil pic ?🤔😂👶🏾 pic.twitter.com/4GB4hzH5w0
— Félix AugerAliassime (@felixtennis) June 19, 2017
Here are 5 things to know about the young Canadian
- Background: He was born on the 8th of August, 2000. His family hails from Montreal and he was brought up in Quebec City. He also has an older sister Malika who is a tennis player. He started playing Tennis at the age of 4.
- Early achievements: In July 2015, at the tender age of 14, he became the youngest player to break into the top 800. In the same week he also became the youngest player ever to win a match at Challenger level with his victory over Australian Andrew Whittington. In 2016, Auger-Aliassime went on to make the final at two Junior Grand Slam Titles, winning at the US Open after falling just short at Roland Garros.
- Doubles Skills: Felix is skilled in doubles tennis as well as singles. He won the doubles title at the US Open in 2015 partnering with his compatriot Denis Shapovalov and was also the runner-up last year at Wimbledon and at the US Open.
- Idolising Tsonga: Felix idolises Tsonga and his game has a lot of similarities with the flamboyant Frenchman. “His attitude and physique and technique sometimes on the serve reminds me of Tsonga” said Guillaume Marx, former coach at the French Tennis Federation.
- Motivation: Felix Auger-Aliassime has been playing Tennis since the age of four. But it wasn’t until he saw the classic Wimbledon Final between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in 2008 that he decided to become a tennis player. “It was like, yeah, this is what I want to do. This is what I want to be – a professional tennis player” said Felix. It’s turning out to be a very good decision indeed.