"It's an amazing start to the season and I hope to continue the same level...there's still much to work on but I'm happy to become a top-20 player," Andrey Rublev smilingly said. In early January he became the first ATP player to win a title.
He did it at the Qatar Open when he downed France's Corentin Moutet in two straight sets not dropping one the entire tournament. Rublev's second title of the season long before the Pandemic was the inaugural Adelaide International.
He had won over Lloyd Harris at 6-3, 6-0 and felt like his game had did a revolutionary change that would land him into being more successful on tour. Two titles he had accomplished in a few weeks and says "I'm happy tht these two weeks went this way and I got two titles, it's amazing."
He knew the pressure was a bit off entering the Australian Open since he'd already won two crowns. Melbourne he did reach the fourth round but was defeated by another former NextGen Alexander Zverev in three straight sets.
Rublev said after the loss that "I am not putting any goals."
Rublev didn't stop there and today is in the top 10.
He's just won the St. Petersburg Open in his home country. He overpowered Croatia's Borna Coric 7-6, 6-4 to feel great, gaining his fourth title this year during the Pandemic an abbreviated, ever changing season.
It was topped off though with a bittersweet win as two days before his grandmother had passed and emotions were running heavy. Despite the Russian winning in straight sets his opponent Borna Coric gave him a fright when he'd come on aggressively trying to grab the first set.
Coric was 'point on' in passing down lines, moving Rublev around and just being aggressive at the right times to earn games. The Croatian climbed to a 5-2 lead and just though he had the first set advantage, but it didn't happen.
The Russian got his game intact, cut his errors and careless play bringing the first set into a tiebreak. He dug deep and won the tiebreak to go onto the second set breaking Coric's serve at 2-2 and winning three service games to win the second set and the title.
The Russian emphasized that his game has changed dramatically and says "Now, it's more consistent. That is what we're working for, to be more consistent, more mentally strong." Formerly a NextGen, Andrey Rublev is creeping closer to winning a spot at the ATP Finals and now ranked at the top 10.
He's gathered 34 wins this season close to Novak Djokovic's 37th victory. Stefanos Tsitsipas has accumulated 27 wins but fell to Rublev at the German Open final. The Greek flipped the scenario and defeated the Russian at the French Open quarterfinals.
Rublev continues to remain consistent and a strong force to handle for most players where he has made the quarterfinals from January throughout the ongoing season. Rublev feels extremely grateful and says "I still huge room to improve and I want to try to my maximum and see what happens."