Koepfer Continues Giant-Killing Run, Ends Felix's Turin Hopes
Making the most of his lucky loser status, Andy Murray’s conqueror knocked out the ninth-seeded Canadian with a 6-3, 7-5 second-round victory over one hour and 39 minutes.
Koepfer will next face seventh-seeded Pole Hubert Hurkacz, who, like Casper Ruud, Jannik Sinner, Cameron Norrie and Diego Schwartzman, is in the running for the two remaining spots at the season finale, to be held at the Pala Alpitour in Turin from 14-21 November.
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Flashy shot-making and eight double faults cost Auger-Aliassime in his first meeting against Koepfer, who broke in the sixth and ninth games of the 43-minute opener.
The German took a 3-0 lead in the second set, before Auger-Aliassime received on-court treatment for a right forearm complaint. The 21-year-old Canadian recovered a 1-4 deficit and looked set for a tie-break, but from 5-6, 30/30, Auger-Aliassime struck a double fault and a forehand approach long to hand Koepfer his 21st match win of the season (21-23 overall).
"My game level was low," said Auger-Aliassime. "I served badly from the beginning to the end. I tried, but [it] was very low level, so I'm really disappointed."
On Monday, 27-year-old Koepfer saved seven match points – the most by a winner on the ATP Tour in 2021 – with victory over Murray, a former World No. 1 and 2016 Paris champion.