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Denis Shapovalov wins 83 per cent of his first-serve points to beat Pablo Andujar on Wednesday in St. Petersburg.

Shapovalov Battles Back In St. Petersburg Opener

Canadian is into the St. Petersburg quarter-finals for the third time

Is this the year that Denis Shapovalov will break through at the St. Petersburg Open?

The Canadian, who made the quarter-finals and semi-finals in his first two appearances at the event, got off to a slow start on Wednesday. But the lefty recovered to defeat Spaniard Pablo Andujar 2-6, 6-3, 6-0 for a spot in the last eight.

“Definitely very tough to play Pablo [in my] first round of a tournament. He’s a great player and it was a tough start to the match,” Shapovalov said in his on-court interview. “I didn’t feel so great, but I just told myself to keep going.

“Obviously there was a lot of tennis to play, so [I] wanted to really turn it around in the second set and I did a really good job.”

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In the deciding set, the second seed won 72 per cent of his return points to finish well and triumph after one hour and 49 minutes. The Canadian is chasing his second ATP Tour title and his first since his maiden triumph in Stockholm in 2019.

Shapovalov will next face big-hitting German Jan-Lennard Struff, who ousted seventh seed Alexander Bublik 6-4, 6-3. Struff will try to reach his first ATP Tour semi-final since he made the Munich final in May.

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