Unstoppable Rublev reaches first Masters 1000 final

The Russian picked up where he left off against Rafael Nadal to set up a clash with Stefanos Tsitsipas

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The Andrey Rublev juggernaut rolled on at the Monte-Carlo Masters on Saturday as the Russian fended off Norway’s Casper Ruud 6-3, 7-5 to reach his first Masters 1000 final.

The Russian, who upset 11-times champion Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals on Friday, picked up where he left off to set up a final against Stefanos Tsitsipas, who ended the run of Britain’s Dan Evans 6-2, 6-1 in the first semi-final.

No hangover for Rublev after Nadal win

Rublev had seemed almost in shock after beating Nadal in the quarter-finals but he came out in the same mood, easing through the opening set.

Ruud fights back, but in vain

The Russian had won all three of their previous meetings, including one at this year’s Australian Open, but Ruud, who reached the semi-finals on clay in Rome last year, fought hard early in the second set, and got his reward, taking advantage of a double-fault to move ahead 4-2.

But the lead didn’t last long as Rublev broke back immediately and he got the vital break for 6-5, holding his nerve to clinch another big win and set up a mouthwatering final.

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