ATP Finals: Andrey Rublev aims for a strong finish in Turin

The Russian will play against Novak Djokovic, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Casper Ruud in the Green Group.

Andrey Rublev with his runners-up trophy in Cincinnati; Credit: [email protected]

Russian sensation Andrey Rublev will be competing at the Nitto ATP Finals for the second successive year. Rublev will play against Novak Djokovic, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Casper Ruud in the Green Group. Rublev, who has a 48-20 match record this year, will challenge 2019 Nitto ATP Finals champion Tsitsipas on Monday. The Russian has stated that he’s going to prepare differently this time around compared to last year when he made his season finale debut at The O2 in London. “I am feeling much better,” said Rublev at the Pala Alpitour in Turin on Friday. “In the past two weeks, I’ve been doing things well inside and outside of the court. I am improving now again. Of course, I will perform my best and I hope to do well.

“In my case, it is to keep the same plan. Not just this week, but if I do things the way I’ve been doing over the past two-and-a-half weeks, I will play better and the results will follow. This year, I am doing things a little differently, in a more relaxed way. Hopefully, I learned something from last year. I have analysed and learned my mistakes last year. We’ll see if I’m smart enough to do better.”

‘I am not even thinking I have a chance’

Despite winning four of his eight ATP Tour titles on indoor hard courts, the 24-year-old has categorically stated that he is not among the title favourites for The Brad Drewett Trophy at the event, which takes place from 14th-21st November.

“I am not even thinking I have a chance or be a dark horse,” said Rublev. “I just want to focus on the process. What happened to Daniil, Stefanos and Sascha, winning the [Nitto] ATP Finals title, was because they proved they are top players, and they had the level to be here.

“In my case, I am thinking about the process and I’m happier about how I am doing things on and off the court. It may not happen immediately, but if I keep doing what I am doing, good things will happen and I’ll go deep in a tournament.”

Stefanos Tsitsipas: The year has been really good

On the back of a promising 2021 campaign, World No. 4 Stefanos Tsitsipas is hoping to take an extra step in his career next year. The Greek star, ahead of the tournament, said, “The year has been really good. I started the year with the intention to eat better, sleep better and put my body in a better schedule. It was all for my tennis.”

“I have achieved a lot of goals to pursue a better career this year and I’m happy where that led, but I have also had my downs this year. Things became too much, a lot of travelling and the pandemic influenced a few decisions.

“Overall, I am happy where I stand and I want to take an extra step and aim even higher next year. That will require new fresh goals, and also [my attempts] to becoming more professional. Working to find where the one per cent lies, or the five per cent, where I can benefit from it. I will of course have my team to help me get to that five per cent that I’m looking for.”

Sportslumo Desk

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