He must have been in a cold sweat, Andrey Rublev, in his first match in Melbourne. Chills that had the hint of fear and risk. The Russian risked being eliminated during the first round of the Australian Open 2024. Despite the two-set lead, the Russian tennis player was unable to close out the match against Thiago Seyboth Wild, who dangerously returned to the match, putting Rublev in serious difficulty.
The two then started a battle of almost 4 hours, decided in the fifth set tie-break. The 26-year-old Russian, albeit with a lot of effort, qualified for the second round. In the press conference, the world number 5 analyzed the long match on Margaret Court Arena, praising his opponent and explaining what happened to him to get into such serious difficulty.
“I was the one who caused problems for myself, because I didn’t play well from the start but I managed my emotions very well. 2-0 ahead, I started to relax a little. I wasn’t as focused as before. I had a great opportunity at one point, 15-40, and I couldn’t take advantage of it. Then he broke my serve in the next game and started his comeback. He started feeling the ball better, served and moved better,” he explained.
Rublev: “I panicked”
“In the fifth set I panicked at the moment. I had more opportunities throughout the set but I couldn’t do it. In the first situation of 0-40 he always served in an unreal way. Then three match points and once again there wasn’t much to do. In the tie-break I thought: ‘After all these chances, he deserves to win.’ They also led 4-1.
He deserved to win. He was completely free and having fun. I felt completely tense and blocked. I told myself to finish the match without saying anything. And somehow those words gave me some relief. I was lucky that he didn’t serve the first on a few occasions and on the second I took advantage of it,” analyzed the Russian.
Rublev also revealed how he asked Daniil Medvedev for information on the Brazilian player, who had defeated the Russian at Roland Garros last year: “I asked him how Thiago plays because I’ve never seen him. I knew he had a really good forehand. fantastic and he confirmed it for me.”