Norwegian tennis star Casper Ruud gave a shout out to Australian tennis legend Rod Laver following the San Diego Open final. Ruud, seeded at No. 2, demolished world No. 26 Cameron Norrie 6-0 6-2 to lift a tour-leading fifth title of the season.
Laver, a former world No. 1, was in San Diego watching the final between Ruud and Norrie. "Special thanks to Rod, obviously the legend. I think you need to come to all my matches now because I'm playing really good when you come and watch," Ruud said during the trophy ceremony, per the ATP website.
"I hope you will come to Indian Wells next week to watch, so let's see [what happens there]!"
Ruud surpasses Novak Djokovic, Daniil Medvedev
Djokovic and Medvedev now have one less title than Ruud but the Norwegian admitted their titles can't be compared.
Three of four of Djokovic's titles in 2021 came at the Grand Slam level. Ruud, 22, joked he would have nothing against switching titles with Djokovic and Medvedev. "It's a fun thing to say it, but obviously Daniil and Novak have bigger titles, so I wouldn't mind switching up with them if I had an opportunity to switch five 250s to three Slams and a 250 Novak has.
It's a bit higher level, but that's fine. I think that's more impressive obviously than five 250s, but I will take it," Ruud said, cracking a laugh. "It would be fun to end the year with the most titles, I cannot lie about that."
Ruud has won four titles over the last two and a half months. "I tried to be playing really good in finals knowing it's now or never. This is the time to bring your 'A' game," Ruud said. "This year I've been perfect in finals, five of five and playing against good players in all of them."