On Tuesday, July 11, Andrei Rublev will face one of the biggest fights of his career. The Russian tennis player, who reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals, has never reached the 1/2 final of the Slams. And now it will be even more difficult to do this, because the opponents include the 23-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic. It should be noted that the Serb won almost a third of his victories at the TBSh in London – he won Wimbledon seven times. However, in tennis, as you know, anything is possible. And the second racket from Russia can defeat even such a formidable opponent as Novak.
Djokovic, after defeating Hurkach, reached 14 Royal Slam quarterfinals. Overall, this will be his 400th main draw match on TBS. By this indicator, Novak is second only to Roger Federer (429) and Serena Williams (423). Rublev, for his part, managed to mark an important milestone in his career after defeating Alexander Bublik in the fourth round of the Grass Major in five matches: Andrey joined nine active tennis players who reached the quarterfinals in all TSH. A day later, they were joined by Daniil Medvedev.
Rublev pulled off a marathon five-setter at Wimbledon! Bagel didn’t save 39 aces
The 36-year-old Belgrade native is in incredible shape. In his first three matches in London, Novak did not drop a single set to his opponents. Only in a duel with Hubert Hurkacz, the Serbian gave up the relief, giving up the third game to the Pole after the match was postponed for the following day.
Novak Djokovic’s road to the 2023 Wimbledon quarterfinals: First round. Djokovic (2) – Kachin (68) – 6:3, 6:3, 7:6. Second round. Djokovic – Thompson (70) – 6:3, 7:6, 7:5. Third circle. Djokovic – Wawrinka (88) – 6:3, 6:1, 7:6. Fourth circle. Djokovic – Hurkach (18th ranked / 17th seed) – 7:6, 7:6, 5:7, 6:4.
Andrey’s path to the quarterfinals of the Grand Slam on grass cannot be called easy. The 25-year-old Muscovite had a hard time in each of the four matches. Only at the beginning of the tournament, the Russian in three games faced Max Purcell from Australia. In the following matches, Rublev gave his rivals at least one set each, and in the fourth round with Alexander Bublik he completely dragged the fight into a real cliffhanger. At a meeting with the representative of Kazakhstan, the seventh racket in the world, by the way, he managed to make an impressively spectacular blow.
Andrey Rublev’s road to the 2023 Wimbledon quarterfinals: First round. Rublev (7) – Purcell (64) – 6:3, 7:5, 6:4. Second round. Rublev – Karatsev (50) – 6:7, 6:3, 6:4, 7:5. Third circle. Rublev-Goffin (123) – 6:3, 6:7, 7:6, 6:2. Fourth circle. Rublev – Bublik (26th ranked / 23rd seed) – 7:5, 6:3, 6:7, 6:7, 6:4.
History of head-to-head matches
The history of personal meetings between Novak and Andrey is not the most pleasant in relation to the Russian tennis player. During their career in official tournaments, they met four times: it was the Serb who celebrated victory three times. It should be noted that Novak suffered the only head-to-head loss in the final of his home competition in Belgrade in 2022.
History of personal encounters. Djokovic – Rublev – 3-1
No.TournamentCoatingRoundWinnerResult12021 ATP Final ChampionshipHardGroup StageDjokovic6:3, 6:22Belgrade 2022GroundFinalRublev6:2, 6:7, 6:032022 ATP Final ChampionshipHardGroup StageDjokovic6:4, 6:14Australian Open 2023HardQuarterfinalsDjokovic6:1 , 6:2, 6:4
As can be seen in the table, the players met four times, including twice in the group stage of the Final Tournament in Turin. But still, a ray of hope for the Russian fans is given so far by their only victory over the great Novak last season in Belgrade. This is how Rublev’s success in that match was explained. According to FTR Vice President Alexei Selivanenko, Andrei was in top shape, but Djokovic, oddly enough, was let down by psychology. “Winning the tournament and beating Novak in the final is a great achievement. Not many have managed to beat Djokovic in the final. Rublev showed almost the best tennis of him. Of course, it was clear that Novak was having a hard time playing at home, he felt that the responsibility was pressing. Andrei also showed phenomenal tennis. In the third set, he did not give Djokovic a chance to return to the game. An athlete of Novak’s caliber seizes the slightest opportunity to get his way. Also, this victory is remarkable, ”Selivanenko said in an interview with the Championship.
Novak Djokovic and Andrey Rublev
Photo: Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images
Rublev is aware that he is currently facing one of the most difficult tasks that can only be in tennis: beating Djokovic on British grass, where the 23-time Grand Slam champion has been unmatched seven times. After the victory over Bublik, Andrey noted the strengths of his potential opponent at that time. “Honestly, I don’t think about Novak’s accomplishments because this is his story. He knows that he is one of the best tennis players in the world, especially here on this court. Why should I think about his achievements? I need to think of myself and do the best he can. Novak is one of the best, he hasn’t lost this year, especially in Grand Slam tournaments. He won them all. This is the hardest part. He has perfect tennis, very fast feet. When a tennis player with incredible legs, who can hit almost anything, plays against you, you need to have a really great match,” Rublev said at a press conference after reaching the Wimbledon quarterfinals.
Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
The amazing game of the seventh racket in the world on the grass “Slam” was also appreciated by domestic experts. So, the honorable tennis coach of Russia Vladimir Kamelzon said the following in a positive way. “Rublev plays great! Andrei on the court does things that only three people have done before him: Federer, Nadal and Djokovic! I don’t see such tennis in Zverev and Tsitsipas. Yes, even in Alcaraz. Rublev is reaching a new level!” – said Kamelzon in an interview with the “Championship”.
Djokovic himself also spoke highly of his future opponent. “Andrey Rublev is a fantastic player with one of the best forehands in the world. There is a very high intensity in his game, which creates tension on the pitch. However, he is an extremely nice guy. A very nice personality. He worked incredibly hard to break into the top 10, where he hasn’t been in the last few years. He is one of the most consistent players on all surfaces. I respect him a lot. I was surprised to learn that he had never reached the semifinals of the Grand Slam tournament, which, obviously, would be an additional motivation for him in our match, it would inspire him to play the best tennis,” Djokovic said in the post. party press conference
Khachanov and Rublev – in the company of Kafelnikov: all the double titles of the Russians in the Masters
So what can a Russian star oppose to his most titled rival? In fact, Rublev needs to put everything in order in order not without reason to count on a victory over Djokovic. Your gaming moments, physics, psychology – if any of this fails, it will be very difficult to count on success. Non-standard tactical combinations are also seen as a possible success factor, which will unambiguously be in the Russian’s tactical plan for the game. Andrey’s mother Marina Maryenko, in turn, said that her son has every chance to win, but the main factor, in her opinion, will be the athlete’s ability to cope with his own emotions. . “Andrey has been bumping into Novak constantly lately – the gridiron always brings them together. It will be interesting if they meet again. Novak is a legend, but it is time to impose some serious and effective resistance on the pitch. It’s more than real. Andrei is ready to fight, there is a good chance to win. Now we need to competently approach recovery before the match. Previously, Andrei did not have enough strength for Djokovic due to difficult matches. The main thing is that Andrei is emotionally ready. I believe in victory! – said Maryenko in an interview with Sport24.
The Wimbledon 2023 Andrei Rublev – Novak Djokovic quarterfinals will take place today, July 11, starting no earlier than 5:00 p.m. Moscow time. You can follow all the events in the “Championship”.