“Going to Do Something Special”: When Roger Federer Precisely Predicted Andrey Rublev’s Breakout Year

Published 11/02/2020, 4:57 AM EST
CINCINNATI, OH – AUGUST 15: Roger Federer of Switzerland congratulates Andrey Rublev of Russia on his win during the Western & Southern Open at Lindner Family Tennis Center on August 15, 2019 in Mason, Ohio. (Photo by Adam Lacy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)


The game of tennis may seem simple but at its core, it’s very unpredictable. The Swiss maestro and 20 time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer knows more about the game than anybody else.

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When World No. 4 Federer was asked to predict a player who will have a breakout season in 2020, the Basel native responded with a surprising name.

Roger Federer Picks Russian Andrey Rublev

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Tennis – ATP 500 – Erste Bank Open – Wiener Stadthalle, Vienna, Austria – October 31, 2020 Russia’s Andrey Rublev celebrates after winning his semi final match against South Africa’s Kevin Anderson REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

The 23-year-old Russian professional tennis player, Andrey Rublev, who broke into the Top 10 for the first time in 2020, is currently seated at No. 8. He has encountered the 39-year-old from Switzerland only once in his career, and emerged victorious in that battle.

In the Round of 16 of the Cincinnati Masters last year, Rublev overcame Roger Federer who had won that event seven times before. The final score echoed the Russian’s big win against one of the best in tennis – 6-3, 6-4.

Although a win is not enough to understand one’s game, Federer seemed quite certain while taking the Russian’s name.

The leader in playing most number of Grand Slam finals, Roger Federer waxed eloquent on the young Russian, “I say that Rublev’s going to do something special.”

But did the Russian fulfill the Swiss maestro’s prophecy?

Andrey Rublev Has Won 5 titles in his 2020 Season

Tennis – ATP 500 – Erste Bank Open – Wiener Stadthalle, Vienna, Austria – November 1, 2020 Russia’s Andrey Rublev celebrates with the trophy after winning the final against Italy’s Lorenzo Sonego Credits: REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

The next-gen Russian lifted his 5 title of the season, beating Lorenzo Sonego in the Vienna Open finals 6-4, 6-4. He got the better of Norbert Gombos, Jannik Sinner, Dominic Thiem, and Kevin Anderson before his final’s win. With that, he also obtained a seat in the ATP World Tour Finals for the very first time.

Before the Erste Bank Open title, the Russian collected titles at Doha, Adelaide, Hamburg, and St. Petersburg. Interestingly, the final match added to his streak of 15 straight wins in an ATP 500 event.

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The 23-year-old has now won the most number of ATP tournaments this year, leaving several next-gen prodigies like Stefanos Tsitsipas, Dominic Thiem and Daniil Medvedev behind..

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As far as Roger Federer’s prediction goes, Rublev has nailed the 2020 season. Along with that, he has definitely delivered something special through his down-to-earth attitude and easygoing persona.

DIVE DEEPER

“Worked So Hard for All His Life”: Daniil Medvedev Lauds Andrey Rublev for His Breakout Season

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Purav Joshi

1139 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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