After a tight Rome Masters quarterfinal loss, top-ranked Italian Matteo Berrettini said he would have rather played on Court Centrale than Court Pietrangeli. "I'd rather have played on Centrale rather than Pietrangeli, the surface isn't quite as good.
But, honestly, we'd be having a totally different conversation if the forehand had stayed in at 5-3," Berrettini told Gazzetta dello Sport after his loss to Casper Ruu, as revealed by Mark Nixon. No. 4 seed Berrettini won the first set before world No.
34 Ruud stormed back to win 4-6 6-3 7-6 (5) and become the first Norwegian ever to have made a Masters semifinal. "When I won the first set, I started feeling comfortable, less adrenalised. Fans behind me here would have helped for sure.
I can't say I would have won, but they would have pumped me more up. Casper knows how to hurt, but I relaxed. I played 3 matches here at a high level," Berrettini said.
Berrettini sets his eyes on the French Open
Berrettini fell just short against Ruud after two hours and 57 minutes of battle.
But the Italian felt fine after the match and his focus now switches to the upcoming French Open. "And despite the 3-hour match against Casper, I don't feel particularly tired. I could easily have played another two sets.
But I'm OK with myself, and I only have eyes on Paris now. I can't be satisfied with my tournament, but I'm proud oh how I did without clay for so long," Berrettini added. 2-3 times that didn't go my way: the volley in the first game of the third set to go up 1-0, and I was broken.
The forehand that was barely out at 5-4, 30-30. Especially the forehand winner that was barely out in the tiebreak when I was ahead 5-3. I remember every point." Meanwhile, Ruud said after beating Berrettini, per the ATP website: "It feels great [to be in a Masters 1000 semi-final], obviously.
These [are the] things that all players work hard for every day in practice, [to] try to make it far in the big tournaments and big events. “This is my first time in the semi-finals and today was even my first time in the quarter-finals.
I'm just enjoying the moment, I guess. I'm in a good flow. I have gained good confidence in my game this week."