Russian Next Gens Andrey Rublev and Karen Khachanov meet in the first round of the 2021 Halle Open on Monday, June 14. Get the live streaming options of this Andrey Rublev v Karen Khachanov match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Andrey Rublev v Karen Khachanov Head to Head
The players have met twice before with Khachanov winning on both occasions. Incidentally their first meeting was here at Halle in 2017 which was a close three-setter.
Rublev Hopes To Brush Aside French Open Debacle
After a phenomenal 2020 winning five titles, making his first ever Tour Finals and breaking into the top eight in the ATP rankings, Rublev continued his strong run of form at the start of the season too, leading Russia to the finals of the ATP Cup, winning the Rotterdam ATP 500, and making the semi-finals and quarter-finals of a number of tournaments, including the Aussie Open final eight.
Despite strong runs at several tournaments, it was disappointing for Rublev to fall short in the final four at Doha, Dubai and Miami. When he started his clay season defeating none other than Rafa Nadal in Monte Carlo, it looked like he was in for a good run and while he did well, he fell short of a title run at both Monte Carlo and Barcelona.
Having been consistent and a quarter-finalist at the last three majors in New York, Paris and Melbourne, he was hoping for a better run at Roland Garros this time, but a shock first round defeat at the hands of German Dan-Lennard Struff put an anti-climactic end to his campaign on the clay.
Rublev has evolved immensely as a player since the tour was last on grass in 2019. Having not been past the second round at Wimbledon in 2017 and 2019, when he was still an amateur to the tour and then recovering from a long injury lay-off, the Russian will look for a better swing here and no better way to get it started with a good run here at Halle.
Khachanov Eager For Better Second Half Of Season
Russian Karen Khachanov had a strong early start to his career winning four ATP titles by 2018, including the Paris Masters and breaking into the top 10 in the rankings as well. Unfortunately, his career has slid since and he has not managed to get back to the level he was at again.
2021 has also been up and down for the Russian. He did well to have decent runs at the Melbourne ATP 250 and in the indoor European season, but did have the best of runs on clay, with several opening losses in the build-up to Roland Garros and a second round loss to Kei Nishikori at the French Open.
The big Russian with a powerful serve and forehand has a game well suited to the faster surfaces and did well to make the round of 16 at Wimbledon in 2018, as well as make the quarter-finals here in Halle in 2018 and the semi-finals the prior year in 2017.
Khachanov will hope the second half of his season is better than his first and will be buoyed by the upcoming run on grass where he has historically performed well.
Rublev v Khachanov Prediction and Tip
With no grass court tennis in almost 23 months, it will be a challenge for everyone to see how they acclimatize to the surface. Expect a good battle with both young guns looking for first blood, but the big serving Khachanov with the powerful forehand should prevail in a tight three- setter.