Alexander Zverev swats Denis Shapovalov aside to set up Dominic Thiem final in Madrid
Alexander Zverev continued his fine recent run in Masters 1000 tournaments as he blew Denis Shapovalov away 6-4 6-1 to reach the final of the Madrid Open.
The world No. 3, who is the only player to compete in five semi-finals of the elite events in the past year, will face Dominic Thiem in the final – chasing a third title at this level.
For Shapovalov, it was a disappointing end to a fine week. But when you consider he had not won a single match on clay prior to this week, there are certainly positives to be taken – not least that he was the youngest semi-finalist in the tournaments history.
But Zverev was ultimately too strong in the night session on Manolo Santana and he will now take on Thiem, after the Austrian took Kevin Anderson out earlier on Saturday.
This was their second encounter and also the second at this stage of a Masters 1000 event, with Zverev ending Shapovalovs first major breakthrough in Montreal.
Back then, the Canadian was ranked at just 143 in the world. He sat 100 places higher on this occasion, with a top-30 debut on its way regardless of the result.
After a tight opener, Zverev struck at the death to clinch the first set 6-4.
Things went quickly from bad to worse for Shapovalov as the German broke immediately at the start of the second to put himself firmly in control of the match.
And Zverev, in a ruthless mood soon broke once more as he stormed to a 4-0 lead.
Shapovalov got on the board to stop the rot but it proved to be a mere consolation as Zverev stormed to victory.