World No. 8 Andrey Rublev extended his winning streak at ATP 500 events to 16 matches on Tuesday by beating American qualifier Marcos Giron 7-6(1), 6-3 in 78 minutes at the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament.
Fourth seed Rublev broke clear in the tie-break and won the first three games of the second set en route to his ninth win in 10 matches this year. Rublev, who completed victory with his third ace, helped Russia capture the ATP Cup title last month and he also reached the Australian Open quarter-finals (l. to Medvedev).
“It was a very tough match against Marcos, a qualifier who’d already played a couple of matches before,” said Rublev. “It was my first match indoors and I felt a bit tight in the first set.”
The 23-year-old Rublev won the final three ATP 500 events of the 2020 ATP Tour season with five wins each at the Hamburg European Open (d. Tsitsipas), St. Petersburg Open (d. Coric) and the Erste Bank Open in Vienna (d. Sonego). He now plays former World No. 1 and 2009 Rotterdam champion Andy Murray in the second round.
“Andy is a true legend and I have a really good connection with him,” said Rublev. “I really like him as a person and as a player. He destroyed me once in the past [6-3, 6-0, 6-2 in the 2017 Australian Open second round]. I’m sure we’ll have great, long rallies and it will be a fight.”[WATCH LIVE 1]
In the first singles match of the day, Alex de Minaur got his Rotterdam debut off to a fine start with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over fellow Australian John Millman in 69 minutes. De Minaur, who lifted his fourth ATP Tour trophy in January at the Antalya Open (d. Bublik), won 23 of his 27 first-service points and now plays Japan’s Kei Nishikori.
Elsewhere, Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz struck 17 aces to knock out Adrian Mannarino of France 6-3, 7-6(6) in one hour and 47 minutes. Mannarino led 4-1 in the second set and held two set points at 5-4.
Hurkacz, who breaks a three-match losing streak, captured his second ATP Tour title in January at the Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com (d. Korda). He awaits the winner of second-seeded Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas and Egor Gerasimov of Belarus, who meet during Tuesday’s night session.