Andrey Rublev sets up final with Borna Coric at St Petersburg Open

Ruben Hill
October 18, 2020

Shapovalov will face No. 3 seed Andrey Rublev in the semi-finals on Saturday.

Raonic fired 18 aces in the contest but Coric converted three of five break points to seal his place in the final. It was Rublev's 33rd win of the year, second only to Novak Djokovic, who has 37 wins this year.

"Sometimes our game style looks the same, we both play aggressively and we like to hit winners, so it's going to be tough but interesting".

In Sunday's final in Saint Petersburg, Rublev will target his fourth title of 2020 when he faces last year's runner-up Borna Coric.

The second-seeded Shapovalov, from Richmond Hill, Ont., downed No. 5 seed Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland 6-4, 7-5 in quarter-final action on Friday at the ATP Tour 500 indoor hard-court event. If you give him a chance, as I gave today, he will take advantage of it. ... So did the eight double faults committed by Shapovalov.

Since the beginning of last month's Hamburg Open, Rublev has won 13 of his last 14 matches with his only loss coming against Stefanos Tsitsipas in the quarterfinals of the French Open.

Denis Shapovalov celebrates after winning his quarter-final match against Stan Wawrinka at the St. Petersburg Open on October 16, 2020. However, Coric did what no others had been able to do - namely, break Raonic's service.

Rublev entered the semi-final encounter on a two-match losing streak against the Canadian, having claimed his only previous victory against Shapovalov in a final-set tie-break at the inaugural Next Gen ATP Finals in 2017.

The first two sets were blowouts. It was a stark contrast to their fourth-round clash at the US Open six weeks ago, where Zverev won in three straight sets after just an hour and 34 minutes, 6-2, 6-2, 6-1. Raonic missed one backhand, and Coric reached an unattainable 4-0.

Coric lost the first set very quickly, and the key was the second game, which lasted more than 10 minutes.

Rublev saved five of six break points to advance and took advantage in the final set when Shapovalov needed treatment on his shoulder. Coric outpointed his opponent 74-68. Awaiting the No. 1-seeded German in the final will be No. 3 seed Felix Auger-Aliassime, who upset No. 2 seed Roberto Bautista Agut in the second semifinal of the day, 6-3, 1-6, 6-3.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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