The world No. 24 Denis Shapovalov locks horns with Japanese No. 1 Yoshihito Nishioka in the finals of the Korea Open on Sunday.
The Canadian tennis pro has reached his first tour-level final this year on the back of some dominant performances. The fourth seed will be hopeful of lifting his second ATP title and ending the almost three-year title drought.
Shapovalov got off to a solid start in his second-round clash against Jaume Munar, winning the match in straight sets 7-5, 6-4. In the quarter-finals, Shapovalov made light work of Radu Albot and won the match in straight sets 6-2, 6-2. Jenson Brooksby faced the 23-year-old in the semi-finals. The American tennis pro battled hard from the get-go but Shapovalov survived to take the first set. In the second set, Shapovalov answered all the tough questions that were asked and he came out victorious, winning his third consecutive match in straight sets.
The Japanese tennis pro has survived a couple of scares en route to his second tour-level final this season. He has not looked as convincing as Shapovalov during the competition but you can expect him to come out all guns blazing in the final.
Nishioka defeated Dan Evans and Taro Daniel in straight sets in the first two rounds of the competition. In the quarter-finals, Nishioka pulled off the upset of the tournament by defeating world No. 2 and 2022 US Open runner-up Casper Ruud 6-2, 3-6, 6-2. In the semifinal, Nishioka had to dig deep to get the better of Aleksandar Kovacevic in three sets 6-3, 4-6, 6-3.
Head-to-Head and Prediction
The head-to-head scoreline currently stands at 1-0 in favor of Yoshihito Nishioka. The Japanese star defeated Shapovalov 7-6, 3-6, 7-5 in the round of 16 of the 2018 Shenzhen Open.
Prediction: Yoshihito Nishioka to win in three sets.
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