Andrey Rublev will not repeat last year's ATP Finals run, failing to pass the group stage after two straight-sets losses. Rublev lost to Daniil Medvedev in the first round-robin duel and fell to world no. 2 Carlos Alcaraz in the second.
Rublev fell 7-5, 6-2 in an hour and 14 minutes, unleashing his frustration and smashing a racquet to his leg many times after the second set's first game and cutting his knee. They stayed neck and neck in the opening ten games before Carlos shifted into a higher gear and broke the rival's resistance.
The Spaniard lost seven points in his games, never facing a break point and forcing his opponent to follow that pace to stay competitive. Alcaraz secured 41% of the return points, breaking Rublev three times from six chances and celebrating his first victory since Beijing.
Alcaraz fired 24 service winners and added 21 direct points with 11 errors. He overpowered Rublev in the shortest and mid-range rallies, playing well and securing his first ATP Finals victory. They served well early on, leveling the score at 4-4 after two fine holds in games seven and eight.
Rublev lost his focus a bit in the ninth game, experiencing a break point and saving it with a service winner to remain on the positive side. Alcaraz fired an ace while serving to stay in the set in game ten, locking the result at 5-5 and adding more drama.
Andrey struggled behind the initial shot again in game 11, allowing Carlos to convert the second break chance and move 6-5 in front. The young gun served for the set in game 12 and landed an ace for two set points. He forced the rival's error on the first, clinching the opener 7-5 after 42 minutes and gaining confidence.
Andrey Rublev almost hurt himself against Carlos Alcaraz. Rublev experienced another blow at the beginning of the second set, wasting two game points and spraying a forehand error to lose serve. Andrey lost his temper and smashed his racquet into his leg multiple times.
Carlos held in game two to cement the lead and repeated that in the fourth, opening a 3-1 gap. Rublev denied a break point in game five with a service winner, staying within one break deficit. However, he could not do much on the return, with Carlos producing one good hold after another.
The Spaniard held at love in game six for 4-2 and earned a break at love a few minutes later with a forehand return winner. Alcaraz served for the victory at 5-2 and delivered powerful serves, moving over the top and sending Rublev out of the competition.