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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday December 7, 2022

 
Felix Auger-Aliassime

Canada's Felix Auger-Aliassime became a Sunday savant in 2022, and changed the perception of his long-term prospects in the process.

Photo Source: Getty

With the 2022 tennis season done and dusted and in the rearview, Tennis Now is circling back to bask in the glory of what was a truly phenomenal tennis season.

Today we take a closer look at the evolution of Felix Auger-Aliassime…

From shaky to unshakeable – FAA learns to fly in finals:

2022 became Felix Auger-Aliassime’s own personal proving ground, as the Canadian learned to excel on the biggest stages in the sport and went from a pretender to a contender at the sports’ most prestigious events.

Given that the Canadian entered the season with a cringe-worthy 0-8 record in ATP Finals, this is a massive development for a 22-year-old player that has long been considered a potential ground-breaking star. All that was missing, most agreed, was the ability to win the big one.

But things took a turn for the better in January of this year when Auger-Aliassime led Canada to the ATP Cup title, clinching victory for his nation in the final when he took out Roberto Bautista Agut in the clincher.

“The ATP Cup final showed me I could play well in high-tension and decisive type of matches,” Auger-Aliassime said in the fall.

That was obvious.

In February Auger-Aliassime officially got the monkey off his back when he won the trophy in Rotterdam, defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas in straight sets in the final.

The good vibes would carry on unimpeded... Auger-Aliassime reached the quarterfinals at Roland-Garros, taking Rafael Nadal to five sets, and team tennis continued to play a major theme, as he took out Carlos Alcaraz for his first win over a reigning World No.1 to send Canada to the Davis Cup Finals in September.

The best was yet to come for the Canadian. Confidence in full flow, he rolled through three consecutive events, nabbing titles in Florence, Antwerp and Basel (which included another win over No.1 Alcaraz in the semis), as he stretched his career-best winning streak to 16, before finally falling in the semifinals in Paris to Holger Rune.

It all added up to a career-best year-end ranking of No.6 after a trip to the ATP Finals, where he kept the party rolling by earning his first ever victory over Rafael Nadal.


Things would go full circle for Auger-Aliassime by the end of the season, as he finished his season by guiding Canada to its first Davis Cup title in Malaga. A season that started with a team triumph, ended the same way.

Coached by Frederic Fontang and Toni Nadal, the Canadian has clearly ticked the next level in 2022. If he continues to progress in the years to come, there’s no reason to believe he can’t become a Grand Slam champion and challenge for the No.1 ranking.

“I have confidence in my work, in my discipline, but we never know when it will pay off,” Auger-Aliassime said. “It's quite magical to see that it happens, and I'm really enjoying playing this way… I'm very satisfied where I stand right now in my career, and I hope to continue as much as I can.”

 

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