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Victory number 50 in TBSH! Rublev defeated Karatsev in the first Russian derby at Wimbledon 2023

Date: October 1, 2023 Time: 02:28:15

On Thursday 6 July, Wimbledon hosts the men’s singles first and second round matches. The fact is that the rain intervened in the normal holding of the meetings. The main interest of Russian tennis fans was focused on the first domestic derby at the tournament: Andrei Rublev – Aslan Karatsev. Initially, this meeting was supposed to take place on July 5. The organizers of the grass major put the fight on the third most important court: court number 2.

Prior to Wimbledon, Rublev played just one tournament after not having the most successful performance at the French Open. At the “500” in Halle, the 25-year-old Moscow native managed to reach the final of the competition, where he lost to the representative of Kazakhstan Alexander Bublik in the battle for the title. Karatsev, unlike his compatriot, held two tournaments: in Stuttgart, Aslan, after qualifying, reached the second round (lost to Roman Safiullin), and at first Halle could not cope with Lorenzo Sonego.

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At the previous stage of the grass TBSH, Karatsev defeated the French representative Luca Van Asch in four games with a score of 6: 7 (4: 7), 6: 4, 6: 2, 6: 4, and Rublev beat Wimbledon . doubles champion Max Purcell 3:0 (6:3, 7:5, 6:4). In the course of the second game of the set, the Russian was trailing 2:5, but managed to seize the initiative and bring the matter to a landslide victory. In a post-match interview, Andrei admitted that he began to better understand the game and feel the conditions. “Doesn’t the grass seem to be bothering me? We’ll see. Of course he was nervous. It’s always like that in the first game, you don’t know what to expect. And the field is not the same as the training field, it adds stress. And today it was windy, and during the match all these details cause stress. But I am glad that I was able to adapt to these conditions and finish the match at a good level”, Rublev said at the post-match press conference.

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The 18-time USSR tennis champion, commentator Anna Dmitrieva, after Andrey’s excellent start to the tournament, spoke about the opening meeting of the 2020 Olympic champion in mixed doubles. “Rublev played very well today – Andrey managed to hold three great sets. Yes, in the second game there was a small glitch, but he managed to recover from 2: 5 in the games and take the set. It is worth saying that it is very difficult to go out and play the first start on the opening day in the Grand Slams, this puts pressure and affects the game of each player. The most important thing is that Rublev calmly solved all his problems in the first round and now he confidently goes ahead, ”Dmitrieva said in an interview with the Championship.

At the same time, the interlocutor of the publication also decided to share her expectations on the eve of the first Russian derby in the third Slam of the 2023 season: “The match between Rublev and Karatsev will be fundamental for the guys, like all their past fights. They have a long history of confrontation: even in juniors, they competed against each other. Aslan began his journey at Wimbledon not without problems. The rain got in the way, but he managed anyway. In the match with Andrey it is very difficult to single out a favorite. The rating difference does not play any role. Aslan recently beat Medvedev, albeit on clay. It will be a difficult match for both players. Objectively speaking, Rublev should beat Karatsev and reach the third round of Wimbledon,” Dmitrieva said in an interview with Championships.

The honorary coach of Russia in tennis, Viktor Yanchuk, also decided to speak before the start of the domestic confrontation in London. “I’m not at all surprised by our guys’ victories today. Rublev and Karatsev showed calm and confident tennis; as a result, they deservedly went to the second round of Wimbledon. In terms of skill, both must be at least in the quarterfinals of the tournament. They deserve this stage. Unfortunately, the grid brought them together, so only one will go further. Rublev has every chance to go at least to the semifinals. His flashy tennis style suits the game on grass – he has great prospects! I think Rublev will beat Karatsev in the second round and confidently go further down the grid, ”Yanchuk said in an interview with Championship.

It should be noted that both tennis players before today’s matchup had only one face-to-face meeting. In February 2021, at the ATP-500 tournament in Dubai, Aslan defeated Andrey in the final. That title was the first in his collection for the Vladikavkaz native.

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The rivals’ presentation match began with an early break from Rublev. Andrei immediately took the opponent’s serve and kept the lead in the game until the score was 5:4. However, the winner of 13 ATP singles tournaments was unable to deliver a set, dropping play on his own serve from the first break point. The tennis players reached the tiebreaker, where Aslan turned out to be more successful. Thus, it was Karatsev who took the first game with a score of 7:6 (7:4).


Photo: Patrick Smith/Getty Image

The second set of this matchup began on a completely different stage. Two athletes again and again brought their feeds to the score 4:3 in favor of Rublev. At the same time, as they say in the tennis world, there was not even a hint of a break. However, it happened in the ninth match of this match. Aslan couldn’t take his serve and allowed his compatriot to break. This time, the 25-year-old Muscovite calmly searched for a set and restored the balance in the match: 6:7(4), 6:3. It is worth noting that in this set Rublev made much fewer errors than his opponent (4 unforced errors against and 10), and also made more winners (9 against 3).

Andrey Rublev

Photo: Visionhaus/Getty Images

But the third set was somewhat similar to the beginning of today’s Russian derby opening match. Karatsev was again unable to keep game on his serve, allowing the opponent to break away immediately in the set for two games (Aslan was able to hit a reverse break straight away, but missed both chances from him). In general, the game passed quite calmly. He fell behind Rublev-6:4. It is noteworthy that the third set turned out to be quite long. Its duration was 49 minutes.

In the fourth installment, it was Andrei who was closest to the break. But he failed to serve out another in the fifth game of the match, although Rublev had a 0:40 score on the reception. This circumstance did not break Andrey’s morale, as he made the long-awaited break when the score was 3: 3 in the set. However, as in the first game, the Tokyo Olympic champion in mixed doubles could not request it and the match, respectively, giving up the game on his serve – 5: 5. But still, Rublev was able to squeeze Karatsev late in the confrontation. Aslan again gave the throw, and on the second attempt Andrei was still able to complete the match in his favor – 6: 7, 6: 3, 6: 4, 7: 5.

Notably, this win was Rublev’s 50th in the majors. For reaching the fourth round of the British Slam, the Russian will fight with the winner of the couple Thomas Barrios-Vera (Chile) – David Goffin (Belgium).

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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