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Shapovalov’s brilliant week ends in Madrid semis

May 12, 2018
written by: Tennis Canada
written by: Tennis Canada

A first ATP World Tour final will have to wait for Denis Shapovalov… for now.

The 19-year-old Canadian’s bid to extend his Mutua Madrid Open campaign fell short on Saturday with a 6-4, 6-1 loss to Alexander Zverev in the semifinals. The No. 3-ranked German showed just why he’s been able to reach the top of the men’s game with a dominant display of baseline tennis, while Shapovalov was unable to recapture the level he had played with in victories over Milos Raonic and Kyle Edmund earlier in the week.

The first set was played at an even caliber, with Shapovalov finding the lines on his lefty serve, while Zverev managed to remain steady with his own game to keep affairs close. At 4-4, 30-0 on Shapovalov’s serve, the German upped his intensity on return and was able to win four straight points.

From there, he never looked back, breaking serve early in the second set to sail away with the match in just under an hour.

Although this match might be one to forget for Shapovalov, his run in the Spanish capital has been memorable. Having never won a single tour-level match on clay prior to this week, he took out quality opponents en route to his second ATP World Tour semifinal and showed exactly why he is on everyone’s radar as one of the brightest prospects in the game.

Up next for Shapovalov is the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome, where he has drawn Tomas Berdych in the first round with a potential meeting with Rafael Nadal looming in the final 16.

(Feature photo: Getty Images)

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