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Milan | A tight final is promised

Milan | A tight final is promised

The highest ranked player in the Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan, arrived in the final after crushing his fellow 20-year-old opponent with the power that has seen him climb to 37 on the main tour.

Andrey Rublev, who started the week tentatively at the Fiera Milano auditorium, is ending it in storming fashion as he dispatched Borna Coric 4-1 4-3(6) 4-1 in just over the hour.

The first match here, I wasn’t playing that aggressive. I didn’t play that good. I was missing a lot. I hope tomorrow I can show a better game. Andrey Rublev

There he will meet the player who has taken to the event from the start, the unbeaten Hyeon Chung of South Korea, world ranked 50, thanks to his patience and focus as he repulsed a strong challenge from another Russian, ranked 65, Daniil Medvedev, 4-1 4-1 3-4(4) 1-4 4-0.

As the scoreline indicates, Chung was in complete control in the opening two sets, but some serious coaching (via headphones at the end of the second) finally sparked him into action as he raised his game to make a match of it.

But yet again it was Chung who kept his cool and when it came to the decider, he ran away with the match.

“I had to stay calm,” Chung said after his win. “I was just trying to stay calm and he was playing good, so I had to play the same as I did in the first and second set.”

Looking ahead to the final, he added: “I need a rest because it’s already midnight, so I have to do my recovery first. We know how to play each other”

He will certainly have to find his A game to stem the increasing confidence of Rublev who frustrated his opponent throughout the match, never allowing Coric to settle. Twice the Croat smashed his racket as he failed to find any answers.

During one of his exchanges with his coach he admitted: “I don’t know what to do any more,”

Rublev, who came into the tournament on the back of three straight defeats, said it was his best performance so far and hopes to reverse his crushing round-robin loss to Chung.

“We’ll see if I can change something” he told reporters. “The first match here, I wasn’t playing that aggressive. I didn’t play that good. I was missing a lot.

“I hope tomorrow I can show a better game.”


About The Author

Henry Wancke

Henry Wancke is one of the most respected Tennis writers in the UK. Henry is the Editor of both Tennis Threads Magazine and tennisthreads.net. He previously worked as Editor of Tennis World, Serve & Volley as well as Tennis Today magazines and been stringer for The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian and Press Association. He also co-authored the Ultimate Encyclopaedia of Tennis with John Parsons published by Carlton, and the Federation Cup – the first 32 years, published by the ITF. Currently he is the Secretary of the Lawn Tennis Writers’ Association and Hon Vice President of the Tennis Industry Association UK.

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