Madrid Open: Rublev to face Auger-Aliassime in final

Russian seventh seed Andrey Rublev beat American Taylor Fritz

By Web Desk
May 04, 2024
Rublev will face Felix Auger-Aliassime in the final on Sunday. - AFP

Russian seventh seed Andrey Rublev got the better of American Taylor Fritz 6-4 6-3 on Friday to qualify for his first Madrid Open final.

Rublev will face Felix Auger-Aliassime in the final on Sunday.

The Canadian qualified for the final after the Czech Republic's Jiri Lehecka retired midway through the first set of their semi-final with a suspected back injury.

Rublev, the highest seed remaining in the event at the semi-finals, will be the favourite to clinch his second title in 2024.

Rublev dropped serve in the opening game but immediately broke back and went on to clinch the first set.

Both players remained on serve in the second set before Rublev broke to take a 4-2 advantage as he ensured that he won the match in straight sets.

Rublev was on a four-match losing streak heading into the event but has made his way to the final while also dumping out second seed Carlos Alcaraz.

Meanwhile, Auger-Aliassime, who became the first Canadian to qualify for an ATP Masters 1000 final on clay, benefitted from a withdrawal or walkover for the third time in five matches.

Jakub Mensik retired from their last 32 match before Jannik Sinner withdrew before their quarter-final due to a hip injury.

"It's crazy. I don't know if it's ever happened to a player before. It's a weird situation to be in," Auger-Aliassime said in his on-court interview.

"I couldn't believe what was happening when I saw his back failed him and blocked on him. I feel really bad for him... We can all imagine what it feels like to come out on a night like this hoping to win and go through.

"I have a lot of empathy for Jiri. For me, I can't do anything but try to prepare for Sunday."