Rublev Rolls Into Shanghai SFs

  • Posted: Oct 13, 2023

Rublev Rolls Into Shanghai SFs

25-year-old chasing second Masters 1000 crown

Andrey Rublev moved to within two wins of capturing his second ATP Masters 1000 title on Friday at the Rolex Shanghai Masters.

The World No. 7, who is the highest-ranked player remaining in the draw, defeated Frenchman Ugo Humbert 6-2, 6-3 to reach the semi-finals in China and further boost his Nitto ATP Finals qualification chances.

Rublev played on the front foot throughout the one-hour, 31-minute clash, striking his flat groundstrokes with power to push Humbert deep. He also recovered from a squandering a break advantage in the second set, winning the final four games to improve to 3-2 in his Lexus ATP Head2Head series against Humbert and avenging his defeat to the Frenchman in Beijing earlier this month.

“The match in Beijing, both of us played great tennis and I had chances. I was serving for the match. He was playing really well that match and I tried to analyse what I did wrong that match,” said Rublev, who struck 14 winners. “I tried to not make the same mistakes today and I did really well. I am happy to win in straight sets. I played a great match and I am happy to win today.”

Rublev now holds a 17-6 record at ATP Masters 1000 events in 2023, highlighted by his title run in Monte-Carlo. Into his sixth semi-final at this level, the 25-year-old will next meet Grigor Dimitrov as he continues the pursuit of his third title of the year.

“It is going to be a tough match,” Rublev said looking ahead to his semi-final against Dimitrov. “He is a friend and I like him and he is a really great player. It is really tough to beat him when he is in this form. This week he is playing really well.”

Rublev’s deep run in Shanghai has also boosted his chances of competing at the Nitto ATP Finals for the fourth consecutive year. He is currently fifth in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin, 1,160 points clear of ninth-placed Taylor Fritz. The Top 8 players in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin qualify for the prestigious year-end event, to be held from 12-19 November.

Humbert was competing in his second Masters 1000 quarter-final, having reached that stage in Paris in 2020. The 25-year-old Frenchman, who upset Stefanos Tsitsipas in the third round for his ninth Top 10 win, is up five spots to No. 29 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings.

Did You Know?
If Rublev wins the title, he will rise to a career-high No. 4 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings on Monday, 16 October 2023.

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