Round of 16 at the GERRY WEBER OPEN 2017 – That is the biggest success in the still young career of Andrey Rublev! The shooting star from Moskau won the all-Russian generations duel in the Round of 16 at the 25th GERRY WEBER OPEN against Mikhail Youzhny 6:0, 3:6, 6:3 and is through to the round of eight for the first time in an ATP-Event.
Youngster Rublev startet heartedly into his debut on the Centre Court at the GERRY WEBER STADION and snatched his 15 year-older compratriots' first service game by a lucky "return-netroller" and fired off a turbo in the following. With clashing and well-placed baseline shots the wild-card-starter played cats and mice with the old hand Youzhny. So the 34 year-old hardly seemed to know what was happening when he lost the first set after 22 minutes 0:6.
Round two was quite the same in the other direction. Now Youzhny could profit from his treasure of experience, variated more when serving, acted more stable in all elements and made the deciding points in a now exciting exchange of blows. In the eighth game the former top-ten player fended off four break points and could finally use his third set point (6:3). Rublev, who will be under the top 100 for the first time on Monday, had ended his creative break by now and was back on top just in time for the start of the third set. The very quick 3:0 showed the strong nerves of the teenager, who bethought himself of his strengthes and even at temperatures of around 36 degrees could keep cool. The "NextGen-Star" played aggressively and without compromise - Even Mikhail Youzhnys' fighter strenth couldn't help him any more. Rublev "powered" himself resistlessly into the Quarterfinals.
"In the first set I played really well. But then Mikhail got into it better and overall served well. He used his only break chance well. But the I started well again. It's a big honour for me to be allowed to play here in Halle. The atmosphere is fantastic here", Rublev stated, who has more than fully justified the wild card he received from tournament director Ralf Weber.
In the Quarterfinals there will now be a summit meeting of Russian shooting stars when 19 year-old Rublev meets his two-year-older compratiot Karen Khachanov on ATP-Level for the first time. Both are competing in their first grass tournament on the ATP World Tour in Halle/Westphalia – and one of the two will be in the Semifinals of the 25th GERRY WEBER OPEN on Saturday.