Russian tennis star Andrey Rublev admitted he felt "depressed" after suffering a shock exit in Moscow. Rublev, seeded at No. 1, suffered a surprise exit in his Moscow opener as Adrian Mannarino recovered from a set down to beat the Russian 5-7 7-6 (4) 6-3.
Rublev had a match point in the second set but he failed to convert and ultimately paid the price. A few hours later, Rublev returned to the court to play doubles with fellow compatriot Karen Khachanov. Rublev and Khachanov were the favorites to win but they ended up losing in three sets to Haari Heliovaara and Matwe Middelkoop.
"Oh for sure [it affected me]. I couldn’t play doubles at all. It was played by Karen on his own,” said Rublev, per Tennishead. “I was completely devastated, emotionless, depressed and in bad thoughts.
I pulled everything down, and Karen pulled it out”.
Rublev admits he needs to work on the mental aspect
“For now, I would say the mental part,” said the Russian. “I think this is the main [thing] in my case, because the players who are better than me, they know how to manage all these moments much better than me."
Rublev beat Mannarino in the 2019 Moscow final but two years later the Frenchman got his revenge. “Two years later, it is completely different,” Mannarino said in his on-court interview. “We have both improved.
Andrey has improved a lot more than me. Even if a player is better than you, anything can happen. I got a little bit lucky today and I am really happy with my performance”. Mannarino didn't have the support of the crowd but still he enjoyed playing in front of fans.
“The crowd was cheering for Andrey but that is normal,” Mannarino said. “I was happy to play with such a nice atmosphere. We have been playing for a long time without fans, so it is nice to enjoy a stadium with crowds now”.