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Ruud leaves Shapovalov in the slot

by Horace Rogers

Rome, May 13 (EFE).- The Norwegian Casper Ruud descended from the Masters 1000 in Rome in two sets (7-6 (5) and 7-5) against the Canadian Denis Shapovalov, executioner of the Spaniard Rafael Nadal, and is already in the semi-finals of the tournament in the Roman capital, where he will face Serbian Novak Djokovic or Canadian Félix Auger-Aliassime.

Ruud left Shapovalov in the slot, and he did so after two even sets but in which he was more solid and in which he pressed at key moments. The Norwegian, world number 10, finished the match without conceding the slightest “break” and is planted in the semi-finals having only given up one set.

Neither contender gave up his serve, but the Norwegian’s four aces, along with four double faults racked up by a reckless Shapovalov, already undermined his confidence in the first set, which lasted over an hour and a half. was decided in a ‘tie-break’ in which Ruud, again, was more solid.

The second inning started along the same tied line. Ruud showed no signs of weakness and this mentally punished Shapovalov, who over time expressed nervousness.

The Canadian saved two break points with 3-3 on the scoreboard which would have been devastating for the game. He stayed afloat and with 5-4 in his favor he had a set point which the Norwegian saved to put the tie at 5. That was enough for Shapovalov, who dropped out of his next game and didn’t was able to break his opponent’s serve in the next one, which closed the game and the third semi-finalist for Rome, which awaits its rival.

Djokovic is the favorite to occupy the last place in the semi-finals, but he will have to beat Auger-Aliassime, a duel hitherto unprecedented. In addition, the current number one is struggling, precisely, to remain so. If he succumbed to the Canadian, he would give up his privileged position to the Russian Daniil Medvedev.

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