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May 31, 2024 12:47 pm

Matteo Arnaldi flusters sixth-seeded Andrey Rublev in Paris

Matteo Arnaldi

Italian Matteo Arnaldi recorded a 7-6 (8), 6-2, 6-4 victory over sixth-seeded Andrey Rublev on Friday to reach the fourth round of the French Open in Paris.

Arnaldi, 23, saved a set point while trailing in the first-set tiebreak before winning the next three points to end the set. All told, he notched 47 winners to fluster the Russian while matching his longest run in a Grand Slam event. Arnaldi also reached the fourth round of last year’s U.S. Open.

“I was really nervous at the end because I was going to serve for the match for one of the biggest wins of my life,” Arnaldi said. “But I managed it really well. … I was focused on myself and doing the right thing.”

Arnaldi will face No. 9 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece or China’s Zhang Zhizhen in the next round. The latter two were squaring off on Friday.

While Arnaldi was jubilant, Rublev had significant trouble controlling his emotions. He was visibly upset and even kicked his courtside bench.

“Completely disappointed with myself the way I behaved, the way I performed, and I don’t remember behaving worse (at) a Slam ever,” Rublev said. “I think it was first time I ever behave that bad. Not much to say.”

Also on Friday, second-seeded Jannik Sinner of Italy advanced into the fourth round following a 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 victory against Pavel Kotov of Russia. Sinner also defeated Kotov in Madrid last month.

“I think it was very different. Every situation on the court was much different to Madrid,” Sinner said. “I just tried to stay very focused on my game. Thanks (to the crowd) for all the support, it’s amazing to play here on this court. I really enjoy it.”

Sinner sent Kotov packing after 2 hours and 27 minutes following an ace on match point. He advanced to face the winner of Friday’s match between Austrian Sebastian Ofner and Frenchman Corentin Moutet.

–Field Level Media

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