TennisSection previews the 2022 Rotterdam Open as AndreyRublev takes on Felix Auger-Aliassime in the semifinal on Saturday, February 12th, 2022.
Andrey Rublev continues to be the King of the ATP 500 tournaments. But the Russian’s title defense at the Rotterdam Open will be under huge threat when he takes on Felix Auger-Aliassime – the 2020 finalist of this event. Can the Canadian inflict Rublev’s first defeat in Rotterdam in two years?
Andrey Rublev defeated his good friend Marton Fucsovics for the umpteenth time. In a rematch of last year’s Rotterdam Open final, Rublev’s ferocious power proved to be Fucsovics’headache. The Hungarian could not force his way into the match as Rublev dictated almost every point from start to finish. The Russian World No. 7 dropped a meager four points on his first serve and he did not face a single break point. Such numbers are likely to instill fear on his next opponent Felix Auger-Aliassimewho hasn’t beaten Rublev in their two head-to-head meetings.
Felix Auger-Aliassime, for his part, advanced into the semifinals of the Rotterdam Open after seeing off a second Briton in a row. Auger-Aliassime backed up his victory over former World No. 1 Andy Murray with a hard-fought 7-5 7-6 win over Cameron Norrie – the current British No. 1. The Canadian baseliner has now improved his record over the Brits to 4-0 in 2022, and is still in pursuit of his first ATP title. After eight place runner-up finishes, could this be the year Auger-Aliassime finally breaks his hoodoo? Well, first he needs to take out the defending champion Andrey Rublev in the last four.
Andrey Rublev leads Felix Auger-Aliassime 2-0 in their head-to-head. If those two matches are anything to go by, then we can expect a classic in Saturday’s semifinal at the Rotterdam Open. Rublev was pushed to a third set in each of those meetings. Auger-Aliassime stands a good chance of turning the tables in this matchup, but I am worried at the number of times he has shown some lapses in concentration in his matches this week. Against a top-tier opposition in the form of Rublev, he will be punished. The Russian is crushing every ball in his sight right now, but I think the Canadian will have the perfect balance of offense and defense to thwart it. If he shakes off some of the unnecessary errors, Auger-Aliassime is good value for an upset win.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Auger-Aliassime in 3 sets.
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