Fixture: Grigor Dimitrov vs Denis Shapovalov
Date: 19 September 2020
Tournament: Italian Open 2020
Venue: Rome, Italy
Category: ATP Masters 1000
Surface: Red clay
Prize money: €3,465,045
Match timing: Not before 6 pm CEST, 9.30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN | India - Sony Six
Grigor Dimitrov vs Denis Shapovalov preview
After an uneventful time on the American hardcourts, Grigor Dimitrov seems to have regained his touch on Europe clay. The Bulgarian has made it to the Rome Masters quarterfinals in fine fashion, having knocked out two local players - Jannik Sinner and Gianluca Mager - along the way.
Dimitrov was at his best against the Japanese player Yoshihito Nishioka, as he allowed his opponent just one game in the entire match. Sinner did give Dimitrov a stiff challenge early on in the third round, but the Bulgarian bounced back to win the last two sets and keep his Italian Open campaign alive.
The 2017 ATP Finals champion will look to continue his good form on Saturday against the 12th seed from Canada, Denis Shapovalov.
Denis Shapovalov on his part lost a tiebreaker to Ugo Humbert in the third round, but regained the ascendancy quickly to secure the next two sets. Before the pre-quarterfinals, the Israel-born player had recorded straight-sets victories over Guido Pella and Pedro Martinez.
Shapovalov has also been playing in the doubles competition, where he made it to the quarterfinals along with Rohan Bopanna. The Indo-Canadian duo shocked the top seeds Farah/Cabal in the Round of 16, but subsequently suffered a loss against Chardy/Martin.
Grigor Dimitrov vs Denis Shapovalov head-to-head
Grigor Dimitrov leads Denis Shapovalov by a margin of 2-0 in the head-to-head.
The two crossed paths in Rotterdam this year, where Dimitrov won in straight sets. The Bulgarian had triumphed in their first meeting too, at the Canada Masters back in 2016.
Denis Shapovalov vs Grigor Dimitrov prediction
Denis Shapovalov has never registered a win over Grigor Dimitrov, but that record is unlikely to remain intact forever.
Dimitrov has never been much of a claycourt expert; his inability to hit through his opponents often puts him at a disadvantage. Admittedly, clay is far from Shapovalov's favorite surface either, but the Canadian can generate his own pace much more easily than Dimitrov.
Moreover, Shapovalov has played with newfound patience and consistency in recent times, and his run to the US Open quarterfinals was thoroughly impressive. If he continues to keeps a check on his unforced errors on Saturday, he might have too much firepower for Dimitrov to stay in the rallies long enough.
Prediction: Denis Shapovalov to win in three sets.