Russian Andrey Rublev stormed to victory over Italian Lorenzo Sonego on Sunday, winning the Erste Bank Open, his fifth ATP Tour title of the year. In the process of winning the Vienna crown, he also equaled 17-time Grand Slam champion, Novak Djokovic, in terms of the number of matches won this season. They jointly top the tally now with 39 wins apiece.
Having already scripted phenomenal success only at 23, Rublev swept past his opponent in all of 1 hour and 19 minutes.
It turned out to be a lop-sided final, with Sonego going down in straight sets. The eventual scoreline stood at 6-4, 6-4, underlining the dominance of the World No.8. Sonego had scored an upset win over 17-time Slam winner Novak Djokovic on way to the summit clash.
Barely concealing his delight at the presentation ceremony, Andrey Rublev said, “This tournament is really special for me because my grandma was also Austrian, so I have Austrian blood. It’s a really special title for me.”
The win-loss ratio for Rublev this year stands at 39-7, marginally below Djokovic’s tally of 39 wins and 3 losses.
The Erste Bank title win also got Rublev an entry to Nitto ATP Finals at London’s O2 Arena, for the first time in his young career. The season-ending event, which features the men’s Top-8, will be held from November 15 to 22.
It’s only the second time since the year 2000 that two Russian players have qualified for the season-ending finale. While Marat Safin and Yevgeny Kafelnikov had featured in the 2000 draw for the event, this year will see Rublev and compatriot Daniil Medvedev battling for the ATP Finals crown.
Also, in a first at this year’s event, as many as seven Russian-speaking players have made it to the draw for the ATP Finals.
After Doha, this was the second title-winning run for Rublev without dropping a set.