Novak Djokovic anchored Serbia into the semifinals of the ATP Cup after defeating Canada's Denis Shapovalov 4-6, 6-1, 7-6(4). Djokovic fought back much to the pleasure of a strong Serbian crowd who were waving the national flag.
It was comfortable for Serbia, who managed a clean sweep over the North American nation, winning 3-0. In the first match, Dusan Lajovic defeated Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-4, 6-2. In the second match, Djokovic survived the scare to decide the outcome of the tie. However, in the doubles, Nikola Cacic and Viktor Troicki combined to defeat Peter Polansky and Adil Shamasdin 6-3, 6-2.
Serbia are the third nation to qualify for the semifinals of the inaugural tournament after host nations Australia and Russia qualified for the semifinals. Spain and Belgium will compete for the remaining spot of the semifinals.
After the match, Djokovic said, "It was an amazing match. One of the closest matches I've played against Denis. It was very even match. He played fantastic, very aggressive, served great. We fought both until the last shot."
Lajovic, on the other hand, said, "I can tell that I was feeling much more comfortable today than the whole time in Brisbane. I felt pretty relaxed and positive on the court from the first point. We started off pretty well, really high intensity rhythm. I was feeling that it was not something that I'm uncomfortable with. Then I was just waiting to one of us to start to open up a little bit and push a little bit more, and I was able to do that first and crack him in the first set. And I think that was the key today, that the one who stayed longer on this high level was the one who could prevail in the end.”
Serbia will play Russia on Saturday in the first semifinals of the tournament.