Shapovalov And Polansky Advance To Gatineau Challenger Semi-Finals

Denis Shapovalov (photo: Guy Deschênes)

GATINEAU, July 22, 2017

With young gun Denis Shapovalov and defending champion Peter Polansky two Canadian men advanced to the semi-finals following their victories on Friday in Gatineau. The tournament features a mixed draw, with the men competing in the $75,000 ATP Challenger event and the women competing in the $25,000 ITF Challenger event. The tournament will be held from July 17 to 23 at Parc de l’Île in Gatineau.

Playing in his first afternoon match of the tournament, Denis Shapovalov had to endure not only the heat and the humidity, but also his heavy hitting opponent. The Canadian was given the tough task of facing the tournament’s second seed Thomas Fabbiano of Italy, who is currently ranked no. 86 in the world. Shapovalov put on an impressive performance, tallying six aces on his way to advancing to the semi-finals with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 victory after one hour and 49 minutes. He will next play US-American Alexander Sarkissian, who fought past Yuki Bhambri of India 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 in one hour and 56 minutes.

The tournament’s defending singles champion Peter Polansky faced US-American qualifier Marcos Giron, who upset the fourth seed Go Soeda on Thursday. Although the Canadian dropped the first set, he turned things around to take the second, went up a break in the third and never looked back. The Canadian had the full support of the crowd behind him as he advanced to the semi-finals with a 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 victory. On Saturday, he will face-off against the tournament’s top seed Malek Jaziri of Tunisia. The 33-year-old from Tunis battled past Vincent Millot of France 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 in two hours and 16 minutes.

Aleksandra Wozniak, the only Canadian left in the women’s draw, was also in action on Friday afternoon, taking on the tournament’s third seed Mayo Hibi of Japan. It was a match characterized by numerous breaks of serve by both players, with the Canadian converting on all six of her break point opportunities. Wozniak was more consistent than her opponent, taking the match 6-4, 7-6(5) in just under two hours. Playing in her first semi-final since last September, she will take on Priscilla Hon of Australia.