Shapovalov defaulted for hitting umpire in face

Published by Tennismash

Denis Shapovalov defaulted for hitting umpire in the face. Photo: Getty Images
Denis Shapovalov has been defaulted from his Davis Cup match after hitting a ball into the umpire’s face.

Great Britain have won their Davis Cup tie against Canada in dramatic fashion after teenager Denis Shapovalov was defaulted for hitting a ball into the face of umpire Arnaud Gabas.

Shapovalov was trailing Kyle Edmund 6-3 6-4 2-1 and had just been broken in the third set when he smashed a ball in anger that struck Gabas.

It was clearly not intentional from the 17-year-old Wimbledon junior champion but, with Gabas holding his face in pain, tie referee Brian Earley had no choice but to rule a default and leave Britain the victors.

There were boos from the crowd at the TD Place Arena, who had earlier roared Vasek Pospisil to a 7-6 (7-3) 6-4 3-6 7-6 (7-5) victory over Dan Evans that set up the deciding rubber.

Britain move through to a quarter-final in France in April.

RELATED: Shapovalov: “I feel incredibly ashamed and embarrassed”

“To finish like that, I feel sorry for Denis. He’s learned a harsh lesson today,” British captain Leon Smith said.

“The most important thing is the umpire’s OK because that can be really, really dangerous when a ball’s travelling at that speed from a pretty short distance. It’s gone straight in his eye.”

Gabas was given ice on his badly swollen left eye.

Earlier, the US scored a 5-0 win over Switzerland as they warmed up for their quarter-final opponents Australia in April.

Sam Querrey and Steve Johnson won their singles matches to complete the United States’ second straight Davis Cup sweep of Switzerland.

In Osijek, Pablo Carreno Busta beat Nikola Mektic 7-6 (4) 6-1 6-4 as Spain edged a depleted Croatia to reach the quarter-finals.

They will play Serbia who progressed to the quarters after a 4-1 rout of Russia.

In Frankfurt, Steve Darcis defeated Alexander Zverev 2-6 6-4 6-4 7-6 (10-8) to send Belgium into the Davis Cup World Group quarter-finals with an unsurmountable 3-1 lead over Germany.

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