For the first time in his career, Rublev advanced to the semifinals with a 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 victory. Casper Ruud, the third seed, will be his opponent.
In the other semi-final match, Novak Djokovic will face American Taylor Fritz. The five-time champion needs to get well soon following a three-hour dead rubber triumph against Daniil Medvedev.
“Physically, I’m not scared because… anxiety merely depletes you of the critical energy you require,” Djokovic added. Anything that occurs to me tomorrow, good or terrible, will happen, and I’ll have to deal with it then.
I’m going to put in the maximum effort today with my physio, by myself, and with my team to ensure that I receive the proper amount of rest and recuperation. Many times in the past, I’ve made a speedy recovery. Ideally, that will be the case once again.
The prestigious season-ending tournament is where Djokovic hopes to tie Roger Federer’s record of six championships. Last time Djokovic won a championship was in 2015.
Both Rublev and Tsitsipas had a record of 1-1 in the group stage, making this match a winner-take-all scenario.
Rublev chucked his racket after losing a game on his serve in the first set. But when Tsitsipas smacked a return into the net, handing him the match, his face lit up and he stooped down as if in surprise, smiling the whole time.
I fought until the end. “I kept on playing and battling,” Rublev said. The first set, at 40-0, I lost my composure and dropped a game.
But I didn’t give up; I continued battling. If I did my very best, I figured I’d have a shot. Thank goodness I was able to turn things around because now I’m in the semifinals.
Tsitsipas started out well, but he faded as the match went on, making mistakes and even committing a double fault in the last game, which gave Rublev his second break of the final set and put him in a match-clinching position to serve for the title.
Earlier, Djokovic definitely tested his limitations by beating the eliminated Medvedev in order to keep his pristine record in the competition intact.
Djokovic was already assured of a semifinal berth, but he was still competing in Turin for the satisfaction of a perfect record and the $4.7 million prize that would be his if he won the tournament.
At the end of the third set, he was obviously shaky as he celebrated his 6-3, 6-7 (5), 7-6 victory (2).
In the ninth game of the decisive set, Medvedev broke to give himself a match point, but Djokovic broke again and went on to win in a tiebreaker.
I don’t believe there’s a ceiling,” Djokovic remarked. The problem lies mostly inside your own mind. All that matters is how you approach the situation and how you interpret what you observe.
The game, your mental state, and your body language will all suffer while you’re physically struggling. But, as I’ve stated before, the greatest conflict is usually the one waged inside oneself.