Fifth seed Andrey Rublev of Russia beat Emil Ruusuvuori of Finland 6-2 6-4 6-7 6-3 in a second-round match of the Australian Open in Melbourne on Thursday. The match lasted for two hours and 42 minutes, as the 25-year-old Russian earned a deserved victory in the end.
Rublev will face Dan Evans of the Great Britain in the third round on Friday. Now, we will take a look at how the match progressed:
How Andrey Rublev beat Emil Ruusuvuori at the Australian Open
Rublev’s tendency to pull the trigger down-the-line helped him initially:
There were a lot of crosscourt exchanges between the two players from the beginning, but Rublev was almost always willing to take the risk by pulling the trigger through his down-the-line shots off either wing.
The Russian’s willingness to attack paid off as he broke Ruusuvuori in the very first game of the match. He broke the Finn again to go 5-1 up and then win the first set comfortably.
Ruusuvuori was more aggressive in the second set and held his serve in the first four service games, but was then broken in the ninth game of the set by committing a few basic errors off his backhand. In the meantime, Rublev hit quite a few winners, including an audacious half-volley off his backhand, to keep the pressure on the Finn.
The Russian had a stranglehold on the match by winning the first two sets and it was always going to be difficult for the 23-year-old Finn to make a comeback.
Ruusuvuori made a brief comeback, but could not match the firepower of Rublev:
Ruusuvuori came up with a resurgent performance in the third set and went a break up quite early in the set. However, Rublev kept firing with his first serve and powerful forehand and managed to break back and take the set to the tie-break.
However, the Russian hit a few of his shots into the net during the tie-break to allow the Finn to reduce the deficit. Still, Ruusuvuori’s movement became a lot slower as the match progressed and he could not defend properly against the Russian’s attacking groundstrokes.
Rublev again broke the Finn and then walked away with the fourth set to secure a place in the third round. The Russian won 77% of the points on his first serve against Ruusuvuori’s 70%. Rublev also hit 51 winners, including 16 aces, which was significantly higher than the Finn’s tally of 34.
Main Photo from Getty.