Rising Russian Aslan Karatsev admitted he was nervous in his maiden ATP final but he was happy that he managed to overcome all the pressure and lift his first ATP title at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. Karatsev, ranked at No.
42 in the world, won a total of six matches this week on the hard courts of Dubai en route to winning his maiden ATP title. On Saturday, Karatsev delivered a big performance against rising South-African stat Lloyd Harris in the Dubai final as he won 6-3 6-2.
Karatsev got off to a perfect start as he took an early 3-0 lead, before serving out for the set in the ninth game. Karatsev also started the second set with a break and claim one more break in the seventh game to seal a straight-set win.
“I am super happy. It was a tight match. [I was] really nervous,” Karatsev said in an on-court interview, per the ATP website. “I want to congratulate my opponent for the final [run]. He did a great week… I am happy that I won”.
Karatsev wins his maiden ATP title at the age of 27
Karatsev won three qualifying matches in Doha in January to earn a place in the Australian Open main draw. At Melbourne Park, Karatsev continued his strong run as he made the semifinal before losing to eventual champion Novak Djokovic.
“You never know when [success] is coming," said Karatsev. "I did a good job with my team, with my coach and it has happened now”. Meanwhile, Harris tried to draw positives from his Dubai campaign. “There are so many positives to take from this week, coming through seven matches,” said Harris.
“Aslan today was just too good. Sometimes it happens like that and you have just got to take all the big [positives] from the week, move forward and take them into the next tournaments”.