While Denis Shapovalov was making headlines in Rome this week, compatriots Vasek Pospisil and Filip Pelwio have been making waves of their own at the Busan Open Challenger in Busan, South Korea.
Pospsil hasn’t had an easy run of matches this week, but fought his way into the semifinals of the $150,000 ATP Challenger Tour tournament, where he’s the defending champion, with a 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 win over Marcos Giron. In 2018, the 27-year-old Canadian has been rounding back into the form that saw him reach a career-high of No. 25 in the ATP Rankings four years ago. He has posted 32 wins to 12 losses this season, including two Challenger titles and a final just last week in Gimcheon.
Up next for World No. 78 Pospisil in the semifinals is qualifier Yosuke Watanuki, ranked No. 342 in the ATP Rankings.
Pospisil battled past Marcos Giron 3-6, 6-2, 6-4, and Peliwo won a thriller over Mackenzie McDonald 2-6, 6-3, 7-6(6).
One match away from an all-Canadian final!
— Tennis Canada (@TennisCanada) May 18, 2018
On the other half of the Busan draw is fellow-Canadian Peliwo, who after claiming his first ATP Challenger Tour titles last season in Knoxville, continues to make strides at the upper levels of the game. He defeated Mackenzie McDonald 2-6, 6-3, 7-6(6) after coming back from a break down in the third set. McDonald had defeated the 24-year-old just last week, and revenge will have sweet for Peliwo, who advances to his first semifinal of the season to play top-seeded Matthew Ebden.
If both Canadians are successful in their semifinal encounters, we’ll have another all-Canadian clash, just over a week after Shapovalov and Milos Raonic played each other at the Mutua Madrid Open. For Pospisil, playing a Canadian in the final of a big tournament is a familiar experience: His lone ATP World Tour final came in Washington against countryman Raonic. Who won 6-1, 6-4.
(Feature photo: Robert Prezioso/Getty Images)