Rublev Surges knocks out Fritz to Reach Maiden Madrid Final
Andrey Rublev secures his spot in Madrid final by beating Taylor Fritz (not pictured). May 3, 2024. Madrid, Spain. Photo courtesy: Mutua Madrid Open.

Seventh seed Andrey Rublev comes through the semifinal match against World No. 13 Taylor Fritz with a 6-4, 6-3 win to punch his ticket into the fifth career Masters 1000 final of career, a first at the Mutua Madrid Open, on Friday.

In their ninth meeting at tour level, World No. 8 Andrey Rublev, the highest-ranked player remaining in the Madrid draw, toppled 12th seed Taylor Fritz 6-4, 6-3 after 72 minutes at Manolo Santana Stadium.

In his on-court interview, he shared: “I started really tight. I missed a couple of returns and a couple of easy shots, but it is part of the sport and part of tennis.

When he broke me, I thought, ‘OK, it is only the beginning, we have a long set and we will see. Maybe he will also not start well on his serve’.

In the end, in the first three points, he didn’t hit a first serve, so I was able to win and it was 0/30. On one break point, I played well, and somehow it was 1-1. Then the match was equal until the end of the set.”

An erratic start to the opener resulted in Rublev dropping serve after a 15-minute first game in which he hit two double faults.

However, he quickly recovered lost ground, breaking straight back and held to take a 2-1 lead.

From there, both players featured nearly flawless performances behind their serve, in the case of the Moscow-born, often followed by his trademark fierce groundstrokes.

The heavy-hitting player earned a crucial break in the tenth game, sealing the opening set 6-4 in just 39 minutes, winning 77 percent of the first serve points.

Fritz stepped up the pressure, forcing the 26-year-old to fend off two break points in the first game of the second set, but failed to convert any of them.

A balanced set unfolded through the first five games until Rublev broke his opponent, firing an explosive smash, opening a 4-2 advantage.

Then, the seventh seed took control, becoming the most consistent player on court, striking a down-the-line winner to close out 6-3.

The 2023 Monte-Carlo Masters champion fired 20 winners to 19 unforced errors, winning all five net approaches.

In addition, he won 83 percent of the first serve points, converting three of six break point opportunities he earned.

The former World No. 5 will aim to lift his second Masters 1000 trophy on Sunday, the 16th title of his career.

The winner of the semifinal between 30th seed Jiri Lehecka and Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime will play Rublev on Sunday.

Cecilia demartini
Sports Pundit staff writer @ceci_2812
Cecilia is a writer and journalist, passionate about motorsport and tennis.Her articles are published in newspapers and international online publications.

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