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Shapovalov sees off Carreno Busta, faces Djokovic next

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Denis Shapovalov overcame Pablo Carreno Busta 6-3 7-6(5) in the first round at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia to set up a mouth-watering clash with Madrid champion Novak Djokovic.

The young Canadian entered the tournament on a four-match losing streak and his straight sets victory over the Spaniard will provide a much-needed confidence boost as he looks to rediscover the kind of form which has seen him ascend the rankings in such rapid style.

Carreno Busta has not been at his best either of late, a shoulder injury has been largely responsible for his disappointing season and he is still searching for his first victory since a four-set triumph over Fabio Fognini at the Australian Open in January.

Another player with injury woes was No. 15 seed Gael Monfils. The Frenchman struggled in his match against qualifier Albert Ramos-Vinolas, eventually succumbing 6-3 6-1 in just 61 minutes.

Kyle Edmund suffered a remarkable loss of form in his match against Fernando Verdasco. The Brit led by a set and 4-1 before losing the next 10 games and eventually falling to a 4-6 6-4 6-2 defeat. There was also disappointment for his compatriot Dan Evans, who advanced through qualifying yesterday, as he lost to fellow qualifier Casper Ruud 7-5 0-6 6-3. However, Cameron Norrie, also a qualifier, ensured there will be British representation in the second round after he defeated John Millman 3-6 6-3 6-4.

Laslo Djere was one of the day’s early winners after he overcame Mikhail Kukushkin 6-3 6-4 in the first match on Court 1. The Serbian’s next opponent will be No. 14 seed Nikoloz Basilashvili, who won his opening round match against Marton Fucsovics on Sunday.

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