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Home   News   Pospisil pulls off Hurkacz upset; Auger-Aliassime saves match points to advance in France

Pospisil pulls off Hurkacz upset; Auger-Aliassime saves match points to advance in France

Feb 19, 2020
written by: Tennis Canada
written by: Tennis Canada

After a fantastic run to the final in Rotterdam last week, Félix Auger-Aliassime continues to find ways to win, outlasting Stefano Travaglia 6-7(3), 7-6(6), 6-3 in his opening match at the Open 13 in Marseilles, France on Wednesday.

It wasn’t easy for the 19-year-old Canadian, who staved off two match points en route to the victory.

FAA came out firing, breaking his opponent early in the first set and looking like the player who was a win away from his first ATP 500 title just a few days ago.

He broke Travaglia to open up a commanding 5-2 lead, but couldn’t hold the momentum and was broken back by the Italian and outplayed in the tiebreaker.

Being up 5-2 and losing the set is certainly not what Auger-Aliassime had in mind, but he battled back in the second set.

It was as tidy a set as could be, with both players not giving an inch and holding their service games right until the tiebreak.

In the tiebreak, Auger-Aliassime found himself with his back against the wall, down 6-4 with Travaglia on serve. But the Canadian dug deep and showed why he’s a four-time ATP event finalist at just 19 years old.

He staved off both match points and took the next two, winning a nail biter of a tiebreak and forcing a decisive third set.

With the weight of the match points off his shoulders, FAA shone in the third set, breaking Travaglia and not giving his opponent even a sniff of the same. He held serve one last time in the ninth game to seal the victory and move into the Round of 16.

Auger-Aliassime, who’s seeded seventh at the tournament, will now face a familiar foe in the next round: Pierre-Hughes Herbert, who defeated him in straight sets at the Open Sud de France less than two weeks ago. The Montreal native will be looking for some revenge when the two go head to head on Thursday.

Pospisil off to the quarters

It was much of the same success for Vasek Pospisil, who won his first two matches in Marseilles to book a spot in the tournament’s quarter-final round.

Pospisil came into Marseilles on the back of an outstanding upset of World No. 5 Daniil Medvedev last week at the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam – and he’s off to a similarly on-fire start in France, defeating Emil Ruusuvuori 7-6(6), 6-3 on Tuesday before dispatching of tournament eighth seed Hubert Hurkacz 6-3, 6-4 on Wednesday to reach the final eight.

Pospisil reached the final of the Open Sud de France two weeks ago, losing to Gael Monfils, the same player who defeated Auger-Aliassime in the Rotterdam final last Sunday. Lucky for both Canadians, Monfils is not playing in in his home country this time around.

Pospisil will face off against No. 2 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas in the quarters, who won the tournament last year.

It will be a difficult opponent for the Canadian, but after defeating Medvedev last week, anything is Pospisil.

Shapovalov opens with tough test

Denis Shapovalov, seeded fourth at the tournament, got a bye to the Round of 16 and plays his first match of the week against former Grand Slam champion Marin Cilic on Thursday morning.

Shapo is on the bottom half of the draw with countryman Pospisil, and if all goes well, the two could meet up in the semi-finals this weekend.

Auger-Aliassime is in the top of the draw, and could face top-seeded Medvedev in the semis.

(Feature image: Open 13/Corinne Dubreuil)