Dan Evans in the semi-final of the 2023 Citi Open, Washington DC, USA
Dan Evans in the semi-final of the 2023 Citi Open, Washington DC, USA | (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Tennis | ATP Shanghai 2023 | Evans searching for more momentum against Kukushkin

By Tony Fairbairn

  • Dan Evans [30] v Mikhail Kukushkin [Q]
  • H2H: First Meeting
SHANGHAI, CHINA – Dan Evans is aiming for more momentum in Shanghai as he takes on Mikhail Kukushkin in his opening round match.


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H2H & Match Fundamentals

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Dan Evans [30] v Mikhail Kukushkin [Q] H2H: First Meeting
ATP Shanghai 2023 Shanghai, China
Hard (O) Prize Money: $30,855
Third on Grandstand Two (08:30 BST) Amazon Prime Video <– Sign up for trial

After being edged out by eventual Beijing champion Jannik Sinner, Dan Evans looks to bounce back in Shanghai where he takes on Kazakh veteran Mikahil Kukushkin.


Tale of the Tape – Key Stats (2023)

H2H: Dan Evans (WR 33) Mikhail Kukushkin (WR 245)
Tournament Previous Best QR2 (2019) R3 (2014)
1st Serve % 59.4 63.1
Service Games Won % 78.1 80.2
Break Points Saved % 61.2 61.9
2nd Serve Return Points Won % 48.6 53.2
Break Points Converted % 36.4 44.2

Evans will look to improve his stats on return as he will look to use smart returns in order to neutralise Kukushkin’s powerful serving.



Playing styles and prediction

The Kazakh veteran now plays most of his events on the Challenger circuit and despite a few deep runs at tournaments, Kukushkin now finds himself on the verge of dropping outside of the world’s top 250. Now after qualifying for Shanghai, Kukushkin will look to end the season on a high as his career nears closer to its conclusion.

Evans will look to use variety on return as he looks to expose open space on the court as he aims to continue his confidence from the baseline. Meanwhile Kukushkin will look to take advantage of the fast Shanghai courts and maintain a high level of play on serve as he looks to finish points off at the net. This match could be a lot closer than the form guide would suggest given the fast courts suiting Kukushkin. However Evans should have too much confidence and variety to win this match and reach the third round in Shanghai.

Prediction: Evans in three sets.


Roman Safiullin def Andy Murray 6-3 6-2

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Meanwhile in the opening round, Andy Murray’s poor Asian swing continued to deteriorate as he lost comfortably to Roman Safiullin. The Brit lacked aggression and authority as the in-form Safiullin was too strong for the three-time Grand Slam champion.

Murray will conclude when he plays the ATP 500 event in Tokyo which starts on the 16th of October.



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