Canada’s Pospisil, Shapovalov to face Russia in Davis Cup semifinal

Canada will face Russia in the semifinals of the Davis Cup Finals on Saturday after Russia squeaked by world No. 2 Novak Djokovic and Serbia with a 2-1 victory in their quarter-final on Friday.

The Canadians, led by Denis Shapovalov and Vasek Pospisil, defeated Australia in their quarter-final matchup on Thursday. Russia is seeking its third Davis Cup title, and first since 2006, while Canada has never reached the final.

On Friday, Djokovic defeated Karen Khachanov 6-3, 6-3 in the second singles match to even the score at 1-1, then returned to the court about half an hour later to team up with Viktor Troicki in the decisive doubles match. They lost to Khachanov and Andrey Rublev 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (8) after squandering three match points.

Rublev had put Russia ahead with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Filip Krajinovic in the first singles match.

Russia’s Karen Khachanov, right, and Andrey Rublev celebrate after winning the Davis Cup quarter-final doubles match against Serbia’s Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki on Friday. (Associated Press)

While Canada captain Frank Dancevic hasn’t set his matchups yet, Shapovalov, ranked 15th in the ATP rankings, and Pospisil, No. 150, have played all of Canada’s matches this week. Pospisil has won all three of his singles, while Shapovalov is 2-1.

In career meetings against their Russian opponents, Shapovalov is 2-1 vs. No. 23 Rublev with both wins coming this year. Pospisil is 1-0 against both Rublev and Kachanov, ranked 17th. Shapovalov has never played played Kachanov.

Russia is without fifth-ranked Daniil Medvedev as he pulled out just days before the Davis Cup got underway.

WATCH | Canada heads to Davis Cup semis after doubles win against Australia:

Vancouver’s Vasek Pospisil beat Australia’s John Millman 7-6 (7), 6-4 in the first singles match, and then he teamed up with Denis Shapovalov of Richmond Hill, Ont., to win the deciding doubles match, as Canada advanced to the Davis Cup semifinals. 1:59