Russian tennis star Andrey Rublev was taunted during his Madrid Masters quarterfinal match versus Stefanos Tsitsipas. At the start of the third set, a heckler made it clear to Rublev how he feels about him and his country.
“Russia, go home. Stop the war," a heckler taunted Rublev, per Jose Morgado.
Rublev, who admitted in Madrid that the past few weeks haven't been easy for him, ended up losing in three sets to Tsitsipas.
“Russia, go home. Stop the war”, screams a spectator four rows behind me in the stadium…
Rublev leads Tsitsipas 1-0 in the decider — José Morgado (@josemorgado) May 6, 2022
Tsitsipas, ranked at No. 5 in the world, defeated Rublev 6-3 2-6 6-4.
Rublev fell short of claiming a comeback win
Rublev got off to a slow start to the match as Tsitsipas opened an early 3-0 lead. Tsitsipas didn't face a single break point in the first set as he served out for the opener in the ninth game.
After losing the first set, Rublev bounced back in the second set as he broke Tsitsipas in the sixth and eighth games to win the set and force a decider. In the third set, Rublev lost his serve in the ninth game as Tsitsipas opened a 5-4 lead.
Rublev missed out on two consecutive break points in the 10th game as Tsitsipas managed to serve out for the match. “He was really applying a lot of force into the strokes, and it wasn’t easy predicting what was going to come next," Tsitsipas said after the match.
"But I’m very glad with the way things ended. "It’s never easy playing him, and I really had to survive that last game with my best strength and give out my soul, pretty much, to finish it in such a good way”.
Rublev's run of six consecutive wins came to an end on Friday night in Madrid. Next up on Rublev's schedule is Rome, where he reached the quarterfinal last year. It remains to be seen how far can Rublev go in Rome next week.