When he woke up on Tuesday morning, little did Ernesto Escobedo know that he would be entering the Coupe Rogers main draw as a lucky loser. He went about his routine and sat down to lunch.
“I found out [that I was playing] five minutes before going on court. I was having lunch and the referee called me out there. I got lucky loser and I was shocked that I got it. I didn’t even prepare. As I said, I was having lunch. I just went to the locker room got some clothes and grabbed my racquet.”
– Ernesto Escobedo
After 12 consecutive years of playing the Canadian Masters, Tomas Berdych had been forced to pull out due to a rib injury. Consequently, not only did the 21-year-old enter as a lucky loser, he was also to play on Uniprix Stadium’s Centre Court.
All this after a call coming while he was having lunch. “I was a little bit full so I just told myself to go out there and enjoy it”, said Escobedo with one of his many laughs.
Did he feel any nerves considering the short notice? “I was still pretty nervous at the beginning. But as I said, I just went out there and embraced the moment.”
He embraced it so well that he defeated Nikoloz Basilashvili 7-6(4), 6-4 to reach the second round.
“I was planning to leave here on Thursday to go to Cincinnati but now I got the lucky loser so I play the second round tomorrow. I don’t know who I play tomorrow. [Robin] Haase? Cool! Good friend of mine.”
From a missed call to the news of a main draw spot five minutes before a match to a first-round win on Montreal’s Centre Court, Ernesto Escobedo definitely embraced the moment. As he said to conclude his talk with the media, “Everything happens for a reason.”
(Photo: Getty Images)