Denis Shapovalov makes reaching the round of 16 at the BNP Paribas Open look easy—rapping, on the other hand, not as much.
The Canadian teenager prepared a rap to perform for the crowd after his match against Marin Cilic on Thursday—which he'd win 6-4, 6-2—and, as endearing as it was, it took him a few attempts to get going without forgetting the words.
"I wrote down a couple of things—took me two, three minutes. Didn't actually look at it until after the match today," Shapovalov said. "So I was like, Oh, my God, what are the lyrics again? What are the words?"
But, at last, after pulling up the lyrics on his phone, he made it through the whole song, leaving the audience applauding and speechless at the same time.
The internet took immediate notice, including Nick Kyrgios, whose review was encouraging, though not entirely glowing.
As much as you are an absolute gun, and gonna be crazy good for many many years, this was tough to watch my guy https://t.co/UCKGWWyLNm— Nicholas Kyrgios (@NickKyrgios) March 12, 2019
And fans of Shapovalov's thought people were being a little too hard on him.
He seems happy and it’s not harming anyone so if the boy wants to rap let him rap ???? https://t.co/kzv7w7Pogd— Thaís (@thais__ferrari) March 12, 2019
But, overall, no one was convinced he should leave his tennis career for music.
I love Denis, but that was... interesting. ???? https://t.co/pSJLKCURCB— Max Gao (@MaxJGao) March 12, 2019
The No. 24 seed next will play Hubert Hurkacz, who defeated Kei Nishikori on Wednesday.