Russian tennis star Andrey Rublev didn't hide his happiness after making his maiden grass final in Halle. Rublev, ranked at No. 7 in the world, beat top-ranked Georgian tennis player Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-1 3-6 6-3 in the Halle semifinal.
“It’s my first final on grass and in Halle,” said Rublev. “I think I can play on every surface and I will try my best again tomorrow. I had good opportunities to break him (Basilashvili) in the second set, some quite easy forehands and I stressed a little showing my emotions.
I then came back and stayed calm, until the last game. But I won”.
Rublev continues his strong season
Rublev made a perfect start to the match, having claimed back-to-back breaks to take a 5-0 lead. Basilashvili saved a set point in the sixth game to get on the board but Rublev served out for the opener in the following game.
Basilashvili then claimed the lone break of the second set in the sixth game, before serving out for a decider in the ninth game. However, Rublev kept his focus after losing the second set as he broke Basilashvili in the sixth game of the third set.
Basilashvili saved three match points in the eighth game but Rublev realized his fourth match point in the following game to book a three-set win. After beating Philipp Kohlschreiber in the Halle quarterfinal, Rublev said: "I am happy with my performance to reach the semi-finals for the first time.
“The first set was really tough. He was 3/0 up in the tie-break and I came back, which was the key. After the first set, I think he mentally went down and I was pumped up. I hit a couple of good returns in the first game of the second set."
Rublev has now been through to his third final of the season as he will be aiming to lift his second title of 2021 on Sunday.