WATCH: Astonishing Andrey Rublev win over Stan Wawrinka
Andrey Rublev claims a confident victory over former world No. Three, Stan Wawrinka to grab his spot in the round of 32 at the Madrid Open.
The pair battled it out for one hour and 19 minutes before the fifth seed garbed his 5-7, 4-6 win over his 38-year-old competitor.
Rublev has proven his ability to excel on the clay court, having claimed eight wins in his last nine matches, with one of those wins granting him the Monte-Carlo Masters title. His last fixture on the surface saw him lose 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 in the Banja Luka Open final to Dusan Lajovic.
Wawrinka has found it challenging to play on the surface, only managing to grab two out of his last four matches on the clay court before suffering a defeat to Rublev. This certainly gave Rublev the advantage, who continued his red-hot form on the clay court.
However, the Swiss star still performed admirably against his competitor, playing some excellent shots to win massive points. Unfortunately, he failed to capitalize on his break point opportunities, only claiming two from a possible six available.
Rublev played exceptionally well and was able to capitalize on his break point, claiming three from the five available. This certainly gave him a leg up on his opponent, resulting in a confident win for the Russian.
The Russian star claimed the match’s final point after sending a thunderous serve, which Wawrinker could not return, gifting the 25-year-old the victory.
Their clash marked the fourth time that the stars have collided, which saw Rublev go level on wins with his Swiss competitor.
“I am happy I am into the next round,” Rublev said. “When I saw the draw I thought that it was amazing being the fifth seed and having Wawrinka in the opening round. When I was World No. 40, I sometimes had a [much] easier draw. I was thinking ‘OK, maybe I would go home early’. In the last meeting, he beat me, so I was thinking to focus and see what would happen but I was able to win today and I feel great.”
Rublev is set to take on 28th seed Yoshihito Nishioka tomorrow. The Japanese star cemented his spot in the round of 32 after defeating Slovak star Alex Molcan with a narrow 5-7, 6-4, 6-4.
Their match will mark the fourth time the players have squared off, with the number one from Japan already claiming two victories over his Russian foe.
READ MORE: WATCH: Grigor Dimitrov secure his ticket to advance in the Madrid Open
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