Denis Shapovalov is through to the semi-finals of the Chengdu Open in China following a focused 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 victory over the in-form Egor Gerasimov.
Gerasimov, unseeded this week in China’s fifth most populous city, conquered top seed John Isner in the second round and is coming off a semi-final showing in St. Petersburg last week. For his own part, Shapovalov was coming off a tough Laver Cup defeat as part of Team World, but has been enjoying significant momentum in his game since a semi-final showing at the Winston-Salem Open.
It was the Canadian who would race off to an early lead, breaking Gerasimov early in the first set with an explosive backhand down-the-line winner. Shapovalov held on to his lead to claim the set, but the 26-year-old Belarusian struck back immediately.
Reigning in his errors from the back of the court and redirecting Shapovalov’s meteoric pace with greater accuracy, Gerasimov wrestled control of the match and levelled proceedings at a set apiece.
An early break once again was the deciding factor, with both players serving well but Shapovalov ultimately succeeding in crucial return games. Such was the case in the fourth game of the final set, with the Canadian No. 3 benefiting from a Gerasimov groundstroke long to secure the only break he would need to claim victory after one hour, 37 minutes.
And what a way to win it:
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) September 27, 2019
Up next for Shapovalov is Pablo Carreño Busta, against whom he has an even 1-1 career head-to-head with, winning their most recent clash in the first round of the Rome Masters.
One win away from his first ATP final – does Denis have what it takes to reach another career milestone?