Holger Rune has backed Casper Ruud to reach back-to-back finals at the French Open.
In a repeat of last year's quarter-final in Paris, Ruud triumphed once again with a 6-1 6-2 3-6 6-3 victory against Rune on Wednesday to book a semi-final against Germany's Alexander Zverev.
“I'll probably say Casper is the favourite for the semi-final, but, again Zverev, if you asked me one year ago I would probably say that Zverev is the favourite,” Rune said after the match. “It's tough to say. Zverev is coming back strong after his injury, but right now I think I see Casper in the final.”
He also spoke about his defeat at the hands of Ruud and shifting his focus to the grass swing.
“Not at all. I was fine physically. No excuse,” Rune said. “I just didn't play my level. It's tough, but sometimes it's like this and you have to learn from it, come back stronger.
“I think I was less sharp. I think Casper is a really, really solid player. His lower level is really high. He never drops. I think maybe he does, but you don't really feel it.
“I have to play some of my best tennis every time I play him to beat him or have a chance to beat him. I managed to do that in Rome.
“It's tough... In the key moments he was more brave and going for his shots and making them. So, yeah, credit to him.
“We have another Grand Slam around the corner, so I hope to be stronger there. I'm happy that the clay season is over now. I'm ready to move on. Yeah, just focused on the grass now.”
SHOW COURTS ORDER OF PLAY – THURSDAY, JUNE 8
• Miyu Kato/Tim Puetz v Bianca Andreescu/Michael Venus
• Karolina Muchova v Aryna Sabalenka (2)
• Iga Swiatek (1) v Beatriz Haddad Maia (14)
• Kim Clijsters/Caroline Wozniacki v Flavia Pennetta/Federica Schiavone
• Gisela Dulko/Andrei Medvedev v Gabriela Sabatini/Mats Wilander
• Michael Chang/John McEnroe v Sebastian Grosjean/Cedric Pioline
• Marcel Granollers/Horacio Zeballos (10) v Ivan Dodig/Austin Krajicek (4)
• Matwe Middelkoop/Andreas Mies (12) v Sander Gille/Joran Vliegen