When Denis Shapovalov shot up the ATP rankings in 2017 with several breakthrough performances, one thing the tennis world had to come to terms with was the pronunciation of his surname.
It’s proven a tricky one. For commentators, announcers and fans alike.
We were given a handy tip. Imagine the French word for hat – “chapeau” – and add “valov” to the end of it. Chapeau-valov = Shapo-valov. Easy!
Fans at the Delray Beach Open obviously weren’t given this crash-course. Shown a picture of the Canadian rising star and his name below it, few nailed the pronunciation.
Sha-pa-lo-va. Shara-povalov. Shap-an-vola. Sha-pol-a-vov. Sharapova (Maria’s surname, not Denis’s).
Denis himself cleared it up at the end of the video, and enjoyed people’s attempts.
Shap-n-vola ???????? https://t.co/OQ72h7IFiZ
— Denis Shapovalov (@denis_shapo) February 20, 2018
But however badly they pronounced it in Delray Beach, the fans all did a better job than this guy …