Barcelona Open 2021: Denis Shapovalov vs Felix Auger-Aliassime Preview, Head-to-Head & Prediction

Published 04/21/2021, 11:54 PM EDT
Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 12, 2021 Canada’s Denis Shapovalov in action during his third round match against Canada’s Felix Auger Aliassime REUTERS/Asanka Brendon Ratnayake


The all-Canadian super clash will happen again this year, but this time, the venue is Barcelona Open 2021. Both seventh seed Denis Shapovalov and tenth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime are equally favorite to qualify for the quarterfinals.

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Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 12, 2021 Canada’s Felix Auger Aliassime and Canada’s Denis Shapovalov after their third round match REUTERS/Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Denis Shapovalov vs Felix Auger-Aliassime: Preview

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The 22-year-old former Top 10 player Shapovalov has not had the desired start to his 2021 season. Currently, he has a concerning 8-6 win-loss record in the six tournaments he has played. His best result so far is making it into the Dubai Open semifinals.

However, the current World No. 14 has picked up his performance here in Barcelona. He came through Frenchman Jeremy Chardy 6-3, 7-5 to book a seat against his compatriot. Notably, Denis Shapovalov hit nine aces in his previous match on the slow Spanish clay.

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Marginally similar to his countryman, Felix Auger-Aliassime also would have wanted a better start this year. He presently has an 11-6 win-loss record and will eye to improve that on clay.

Additionally, the 20-year-old began his Barcelona campaign dropping a set to Italian teenage sensation Lorenzo Musetti. But Felix recovered well and ended the match, causing a bagel in the decider set.

Thus, both look well-qualified to make it into the last 16 at Barcelona Open.

Shapovalov vs Auger-Aliassime: Head-to-Head

The head-to-head battle between Shapovalov and Auger-Aliassime is standing at 2-2. Moreover, the latter got his second win only recently at the 2021 Australian Open.

The duo has also met once on clay in the opening round of the 2019 Madrid Open. Felix defeated Shapovalov handsomely 6-2, 7-6 (7).

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Shapovalov vs Auger-Aliassime: Prediction

There is no easy way to differentiate the better between the two good friends Denis and Felix. Interestingly, the Canadians have grown up competing with one another on the tennis court since Felix was 11 years old.

Tennis – Murray River Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 7, 2021 Canada’s Felix Auger Aliassime reacts during his final singles match against Britain’s Dan Evans REUTERS/Kelly Defina

On the other hand, Barcelona has seen numerous long rallies and matches, which both of them would love to experience. Thus, the outcome will depend heavily on the first serve success rate and all those long rallies.

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Chiefly, Shapovalov has started playing deep behind the baseline in Barcelona. He believes it gives him more time to react and control his shots. Let us see how his strategy pans out against the disciplined and swift mover Auger-Aliassime.

Prediction: Felix to win in the deciding set.

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Purav Joshi

677 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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