Rising Russian Aslan Karatsev has been confirmed for Lyon, the tournament announced on Tuesday through its Twitter account. Karatsev, who is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 27 in the world, is set to make his Lyon debut as he has no previous appearances at the tournament.
Karatsev, who famously made the Australian Open semifinal as a qualifier earlier this year, will certainly be one of the biggest attractions in Lyon this year. Karatsev joins a star-studded Lyon player field that includes Gael Monfils, David Goffin and Diego Schwartzman.
An ATP 250 event in Lyon is scheduled to take place between May 17-23.
Karatsev ended runner-up in Belgrade
Last week, Karatsev stunned 18-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic in the Belgrade semifinal. "Particularly, in today's performance, Karatsev showed a lot of courage and that's why I gave him a thumbs-up -- because I felt like he deserved to win.
You know, we were both fighting all the way through and, but he just went for his shots when he needed it and he came up with the goods," Djokovic
said after losing to Karatsev. A day later, Karatsev returning to the court and lost a tight battle in the Belgrade final to Matteo Berrettini.
"I respect [Aslan] a lot. I have practiced with him once and I know that he can play great tennis. I think he did a great match today," Berrettini said. "The mental part was that he deserved to be in the final, but I deserved it as well.
In the end when you're in a final, it's [about] who wants it more. Yes, you have to play good tennis, you have to be tough. But at the end of the day the Rankings don't count, the Race doesn't count. It's just who wants it more or who is more ready, and I guess today I was better than him."