"Clay tennis is real tennis" says Andrey Rublev
Andrey Rublev recently enjoyed a very good run at the Monte-Carlo Masters where he reached the final losing to Stefanos Tsitsipas.
It was his first ATP Masters 1000 final which he reached after defeating noted clay-court specialists such as Casper Ruud and Rafael Nadal. His next clay experience will be at the Madrid Open. He will play Tommy Paul in the 2nd round and before the event, he sat down with ATP Tennis TV to talk about it.
Asked what his best surface is he said:
“I don’t know actually which is my best surface. But for me, clay is the surface where it’s real tennis. Where you have to be physically fit, where you have to be smart. How to play, where to play. On clay, some lucky things that can happen on hard courts don’t really happen."
Asked to further elaborate on that he continued:
“Like the guy serves so good one game and then he makes one return out of nowhere – winner in an important moment. On clay, normally it’s not going to happen On clay, you have to be really fit to play each point, to play right directions, and you need to go and really beat the guys.”
To his credit, Rublev makes a good point as clay tennis tends to be rather exciting with a lot of long rallies and points are usually won by carefully crafting them. Rublev does it well and when his forehand is good he is hard to beat.
Paul will give his best but considering the kind of year Rublev is having and the level he displayed in Monte-Carlo the Russian is the clear favourite to move on.