Russia’s Andrey Rublev is through the fourth round of the US Open after he emerged on top in a stirring five set epic against Denis Shapovalov late on Saturday in New York.
The titanic encounter, which lasted a mammoth four hours and ten minutes, saw ninth-seed Rublev emerge on top after a thrilling last set during which he squandered three match points on his own serve at 5-4 in the final set to claim the win and passage to the fourth round of the final Grand Slam event of the year.
Rublev, 24, was clearly elated with the result once it was confirmed, falling to floor of the hard court major in joy after clinching the 6-4, 2-6, 6-7(3), 6-4, 7-6(10-7) win with his fifth match point.
The Russian star powered 38 winners past Shapovalov throughout the encounter as the Canadian began to struggle with his first serve as the match wore on – and while he appeared to steady the ship towards the latter stages of the match, Rublev ultimately refused to squander the momentum he had established and claimed what was a well-earned win.
The #USOpen men’s singles Round of 16 is set:Medvedev vs 🇦🇺 Kyrgios🇪🇸 Carreno Busta vs Khachanov🇪🇸 Davidovich Fokina vs 🇮🇹 Berrettini🇫🇷 Moutet vs 🇳🇴 RuudIvashka vs 🇮🇹 Sinner🇭🇷 Cilic vs 🇪🇸 Alcaraz🇬🇧 Norrie vs Rublev🇺🇸 Tiafoe vs 🇪🇸 Nadal
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 4, 2022
The two players embraced in the middle of the court after Rublev secured the win, with the Russian congratulating the world number 21 for his efforts in the epic tussle.
Rublev had previously emerged from a five-set match in his first round clash with Laslo Djere, and now holds a 2-1 advantage in winner-takes-all sets at the Grand Slam event.
The Moscow man will next play Great Britain’s Cameron Norrie in Monday’s round of 16 clash after the seventh seed bested Holger Rune in straight sets, also on Saturday.
Should Rublev claim the victory against the Briton, it will equal his best career performance at the US Open after previously qualifying for the quarter-finals in both 2017 and 2020.
Two years ago Rublev defeated Matteo Berrettini to assure his place in the final eight of the tournament.
And should he go all the way, it would represent a first-ever Grand Slam win for the Russian star, which would come after already winning tour-level events in Marseille, Dubai and Belgrade this season.
“Obviously it was a crazy match. Obviously Denis deserved to win as well, as we all know,” Rublev said afterwards.
“Both of us deserved to win. [After] you play these kinds of matches, there is no winner, in my opinion.”
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