Alexander Bublik earns a comeback win over Felix Auger-Aliassime to return to the final in Montpellier. The 2022 champion has set a box office championship match against Croat Borna Coric, who moved past injured Holger Rune on Saturday.
Second seed Alexander Bublik rallied from a set down to overcome Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime 4-6, 6-4, 6-4, progressing to the final at the Open Sud de France after two hours and 37 minutes on Saturday.
“I am happy to get through,” the Kazakhstani player said. “Especially on indoor courts. I am happy to get through; I left it all out there. I will try to win it again tomorrow.”
The semifinal against Auger-Aliassime became the third consecutive match the World No. 27 turned around from a set down throughout the ATP 250 tournament.
The 26-year-old who made it to the semifinals in Adelaide, falling to eventual champion Briton Jack Draper, survived the top-level tests proposed by Canadian Denis Shapovalov, compatriot Alexander Shevchenko, and the third seed in the last four.
After dropping the opener to the Canadian player, Bublik’s ferocious ball-striking and booming serve helped him recover lost ground, breaking his adversary twice, saving a set point to clinch the second set in 50 minutes.
In the decider, a lengthy first game saw the World No. 30 saving four break points before dropping his serve to the former champion, who took the early lead.
Nonetheless, Auger-Aliassime charged back, breaking to set level in the fourth game at 2-2, just before the seven-time ATP finalist converted a pivotal break in the seventh game and never looked back.
Moreover, he hit 14 aces, winning 74 percent of the first serve points to claim victory.
Meanwhile, Croatian Borna Coric set up a championship clash with Bublik after his semifinal opponent, World No. 7 Holger Rune, retired from his 15th semifinal on tour due to an injury in his right forearm.
The fourth seed wrapped up proceedings when leading 6-3, 4-1 in nearly an hour at Court Patrice Dominguez.
Coric, 27, advanced to the final without dropping a set all week, leaving behind Spaniard Pedro Martinez, Italian Fabio Cobolli, and Rune by walkover.
On Sunday, both players will seek to capture their fourth career title on the tour, a first thus far this season.