Andrey Rublev reigns in Monte-Carlo

Andrey Rublev

Updated: Apr 19, 2023 4:36 pm

Andrey Rublev broke through for the biggest title of his career on Sunday, defeating Holger Rune in a thrilling final at the Rolex Monte Carlo Masters.

Rublev came from behind to win 5-7, 6-2, 7-5 to claim his first Masters 1000 title of his career. His first success at the Masters 1000 level came in his third appearance in a final after losing the final in Monte-Carlo in 2021 to Stefanos Tsitsipas as well as losing to Alexander Zverev at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati the same year.

Rune started the stronger after getting the first break point in Rublev’s first game which was saved by a backhand winner down the line. After saving two at 1-1, Rune played a brilliant game with drop-shot winners and great returns to break for a 4-2 lead. Rublev responded with a break of his own but required five break point chances to break back. Rublev had a break point to serve for the set at 4-4 but a big Rune serve saved it before Rune broke to win the set when Rublev hit a forehand long at 5-6 (30-40). Rublev had 8 break points in the first set but could only convert 1 compared to Rune’s 2 breaks of just 4 break chances.

But rather than folding in the second, Rublev broke straight away and had chances for a 3-0 lead in the 2nd before Rune got back level at 2-2. Rublev remained undeterred and got two more break points in the fifth game of the set with a fine volley winner and with Rune unable to put away his own volley on the next point, the break advantage was restored.

Rune struggling with the effects of his long semi-final victory over Jannik Sinner played a tired service game at 2-4 with 2 double faults as well as a magnificent lob from Rublev gave the fifth seed a 5-2 lead. He then held to 30 to level the match. Rune was only able to win 23% of his 2nd serve points in the 2nd set as Rublev hit 11 winners.

In the decider, it was Rune who came out the stronger player. He held an important service game to open the set before breaking Rublev from 40-0 down before saving a further 3 game points before taking his first break point of the game before holding for a 3-0 lead.

Rublev was still fighting and managed to get 2 break points at 3-1 but a big forehand and an ace from Rune allowed the sixth seed to take a 4-1 lead.

Then came the turning point. Rublev fell behind 0-30 and then break point to give Rune a commanding lead in the final set at 5-1. But Rublev managed to find a way to hold serve and capitalised on Rune failing to take his opportunity as another 2 double faults from the Dane gifted Rublev a way back into the match as he levelled the final set. Both men then held to love to move to 5-5.

Ultimately, Rune broke himself at the critical moment. He first lost his composure, missing two overheads on the first two points before sending 2 balls into the crowd. The pair split the next two points to give Rublev two break points to serve for the match, Rune saved the first with a fantastic backhand down the line but a double fault (his ninth of the day) handed Rublev the chance to serve for the match.

Rublev didn’t let the opportunity slip as he raced to 40-0 before an ace on his 2nd championship point gave him his first Masters 1000 title. It denied Rune, his 2nd victory at that level having won the Paris Masters title in November last year. Despite the loss, Rune improved his World Ranking to a career-high of No.7 whereas Rublev remains at No.6.

For more on this story: Andrey Rublev Defeats Holger Rune For Monte-Carlo Title | ATP Tour | Tennis

To read more about Tennis at World in Sport: Petra Kvitová Wins Miami Open (


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