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Jared Donaldson took his stellar 2017 campaign to additional heights when he knocked out Lucas Pouille 7-6(5), 7-6(8) in the Rogers Cup first round on Monday afternoon. Donaldson struck 10 aces and won 80 percent of his first-serve points before advancing in one hour and 58 minutes.


The 20-year-old American is currently seventh in the race to the NextGen ATP Finals in Milan.


“I feel like there’s a lot of great [up-and-coming] players playing right now,” Donaldson commented. “I’m just honored to be one of them. It’d be nice to make it and compete with those great guys. They all play so well, and I feel lucky to be a part of it and hopefully I can qualify for it.”


Countryman Reilly Opelka, 19, is not on course for berth in Milan and his result on Monday will not help his chances. Opelka showed signs of posting a comeback victory, but he eventually succumbed to Diego Schwartzman 6-3, 6-7(2), 6-4 after two hours and nine minutes.


While Schwartzman and Opelka did well to make things interesting on the court, the matchup itself was even more notable. It marked one of the most extreme size differences in tour history, as Opelka registers at 6’11” and Schwartzman stands at just 5’7”.


Speaking of big men, recent Newport and Atlanta champion John Isner lost to Juan Martin Del Potro 7-5, 7-5 on Monday night. Isner crushed 24 aces but he was broken twice and failed to generate a single break chance against the Del Potro serve.


Donaldson, Schwartzman, and Del Potro are joined in the second round by Australian Nick Kyrgios, whose injury issues may be a thing of the past. Kyrgios turned in a convincing performance to destroy Viktor Troicki 6-1, 6-2 in just 50 minutes.


“I’ve been struggling the last couple months with a bunch of things,” the world No. 24 said. “I just have to keep doing the right things. I’m getting a lot of treatment, trying to do my rehab every day. I’m doing everything I can.”


Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.