Daniel Evans: from resurrection to beat world No. 1

Daniel Evans: from resurrection to beat world No. 1

Daniel evans gave the big bang of the Monte-Carlo Masters 1000. The Briton, 30, beat Novak Djokovic (1st) in straight sets (6-4 and 7-5) and obtained the most important triumph of his career.

Born in Birmingham in May 1990, Evans is the son of an electrician and a nurse. With only seven years old, his first steps in the sport were not with a racket in his hand, but he was dedicated to playing squash with his father at the West Warwickshire Sports Club in Solihull, a market town 153 km from London.

His relationship with tennis began in 2000, when he took up the racket and moved to the Edgbaston Priory Club.. There he spent three years before joining the Lawn Tennis Association academy at Loughborough University. Being just a boy, he moved in with a “host family“, typical custom in British countries to receive and host people at home as a form of hospitality. “I was never the best at 14 and 15, in fact I was probably the worst. I was smaller than everyone else and a late developer, but I always thought I was pretty good and in the end, I was the best.” declared years later.

Fan of the popular English club Aston Villa, Evans debuted on the track in 2006 in an F10 in Nottingham, where he was defeated by Lee Childs, 392 in the world at the time, by 5-7 and 4-6. From there, the young Briton began to grow. By 2010 he was among the best 255 players in the world and in May 2016 he entered the Top 100. In that period he won 13 Futures, four Challengers and the Davis Cup with Great Britain after beating Belgium 3-1.

But his tennis history would be tainted in April 2017. At that time the player was suspended for a year due to a substance addiction. “It is the worst thing I have done in my life. It’s a shocking thing to do. It has disappointed a lot of people. Not only that, it has brought unwanted press to tennis. God knows what some of the greats of the game will think when that kind of thing makes the headlines. “ expressed a year after his suspension.

Evans was disqualified from playing tournaments or training and during that time he was secluded at his home in Cheltenham, a resort town in the county of Gloucestershire. There, he was banned from practicing at facilities affiliated with the Lawn Tennis Association of Great Britain for 10 months and was spending his time watching television without tuning in to tennis matches.

Despite this situation, It wasn’t the first time he had trouble with suspensions: In 2006, he was pulled from the Wimbledon youth tournament by the LTA, the sport’s national governing body, for unacceptable behavior on the court. Two years later, the LTA suspended him for four months after he was photographed during Wimbledon at a nightclub. And in 2010 the LTA stopped supporting him financially because of poor performance and a bad attitude.

But all of this ended up being an engine of recovery for Evans. “It’s good to be back on the court, in a tournament preparing for some games. I feel pretty good about myself, but there is nothing like playing games and being in shape.” He barely returned from suspension in mid-2018. And the Briton rose from 1,195th to the Top 100 in less than a year.

Your first title ATP had to wait. It was only at the beginning of 2021 when he triumphed in Melbourne II, defeating Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-2 and 6-3 in the deciding match. And now in Monte Carlo, continues to rewrite its history of vindication: he beat Novak Djokovic for the first time in his career (he had only four victories on brick dust in his career), for the first time a world No. 1 and for the first time a member of the “Big 3”.

In Monaco, the Briton will go in search of continuing to write the new pages of his career together with the Argentine coach Sebastián Prieto, with whom he has been working for a few weeks and with whom he achieved the best participation in a Masters 1000 tournament.

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