Russia and Italy set ATP Cup title clash
Russia and Italy will compete for the trophy at the second ATP Cup on Sunday following their wins over Germany and Spain in the singles rubbers.
Andrey Rublev and Daniil Medvedev have proved their top-10 status this week, both leading Russia towards three singles triumphs and safely into the title match. On Saturday, Andrey Rublev came from a set down to oust Jan-Lennard Struff 3-6, 6-1, 6-2 in an hour and 34 minutes. The Russian restored the order following the first set and stood strong on both serve and return in sets two and three to bring the victory home.
Like Andrey, Daniil Medvedev had to chase the result against Alexander Zverev, scoring a 3-6, 6-3, 7-5 triumph in two hours and 37 minutes to push Russia over the top. Zverev fired 35 winners and 40 unforced errors, overcoming the Russian's 31-46 ratio but failing to bring the victory home in the decisive moments, like against world no. 1 Novak Djokovic on Friday. Both players won 106 points and played against 11 break opportunities, with Medvedev scoring three breaks and defending nine break chances to cross the finish line first.
Zverev made a better start and held in game nine to take the opener 6-3. They traded breaks in games five and six of set number two, with another return game for Medvedev at 4-3 before closing the set with a hold at 15. After ten comfortable holds in the decider, Alexander hit a double fault to drop serve and gave Medvedev the lead. The last game proved to be a roller coaster, with five break chances for the German. He failed to convert any, allowing Daniil to emerge at the top and send Russia into the final.
In the second semi-final, Fabio Fognini and Matteo Berrettini secured the victory for Italy over Spain without Rafael Nadal. Fognini defeated Pablo Carreno Busta 6-2, 1-6, 6-4, while Barrettini toppled Roberto Bautista Agut 6-3, 7-5 to propel his country into the Sunday's final.
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