World no. 14 Denis Shapovalov is through to the semi-final at the 13th edition of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi. Denis took down the fellow debutant Taylor Fritz 6-3, 6-0 in swift 55 minutes to advance into the semi-final, where he faces Andrey Rublev on Friday.
Taylor replaced Casper Ruud in the draw but could not fight for a place in the semis, losing ground in the middle of the opening set and allowing Denis to rattle off ten straight games and sail into the last four. The American claimed the opening game with a service winner despite two double faults, and the Canadian responded with an unreturned serve in game two for 1-1.
Denis Shapovalov ousted Taylor Fritz in under an hour in Abu Dhabi.
Shapovalov hit a wild forehand in the third game before landing an ace in the next one to lock the result at 2-2. Taylor was still serving strong in game five, closing it with an unreturned serve and looking good on the court so far, especially after landing the first serve in.
A left-hander painted a forehand winner in the sixth game to remain on the positive side and grabbed the first break of serve a few minutes later when his opponent sprayed a backhand mistake. The Canadian almost ruined his advantage after a couple of double faults in the eighth game, fending off four break chances with service winners and hitting another to bring the game home and forge the advantage.
Serving at 3-5, Fritz sprayed a forehand mistake to lose serve for the second straight time and hand the set to his opponent after 33 minutes. Denis brought the second set's opening game home with a drop shot winner and landed a forehand down the line winner in the next one to open a set and a break advantage.
A service winner pushed the Canadian 3-0 in front before securing the fourth consecutive break that moved him closer to the finish line. Shapovalov held at love in game five with a service winner and sealed the deal after Fritz's backhand mistake in the next one.
Thus, Denis will fight in the semi-final, while Taylor goes into a fifth-place match against Andy Murray or Daniel Evans.