Casper Ruud fought into a third-set tiebreak against uncomfortable opponent Alexander Bublik, with the Norwegian sprinting to a 6-1, 4-6, 7-6 (0) Sunday victory at the Rome Masters.
Unpredictable Kazakh Bublik trashed a racquet as Ruud earned six match points in the decider; he needed just one – a second-serve ace – to move into the fourth round at the Foro Italico.
The Scandinavian winner said the match was turned on its head by momentum shifts.
“The first two sets could not have been more different,” he said. “He was always leading
“And it was really tough in the third. But I played a very good tiebreak – it was great to win it this way to love.”
Ruud moved into a match with Serb Laslo Djere.
The winner of the shot-making match-up sent over 29 winners and committed just 15 unforced errors. Bublik’s numbers were similar: 37 and 36.
After playing semi-finals here in 2020 and 2022, Rudd said he is comfortable in Rome.
“This has been a very good tournament for me, I’ve beaten a lot of good players.
“I have good memories and the venue gives me a good vibe.
“I’m hoping for a good couple of weeks before Roland Garros (where he has played the 2022 final against Rafael Nadal) comes around (from May 28).”
Main photo:- Casper Ruud winning in Rome today – by Corinne Dubreuil/ATPTour.com