Andrey Rublev - Shanghai Masters 2023

Andrey Rublev claims he needs to improve ‘a ton of everything’

Andrey Rublev won his first Masters 1000 title and moved back up to his career-high ranking this year, but the Russian still believes there is a lot to improve.

Rublev finished his season by qualifying for a fourth consecutive ATP Finals tournament, but things did not go so well this year with the No.5 not winning a single set in his three round-robin matches.

However, there have been plenty of positives to reflect on for the 26-year-old, who won his maiden Masters 1000 title in Monte Carlo earlier this year and added his 14th ATP title in Bastad.

As well as this, Rublev also reached the quarter-final stage of three of the four Grand Slam tournaments, but is still yet to make it to a semi-final that has alluded his career so far.

When speaking to Championat, Rublev spoke about what he has improved in his game this year, “This year I have improved a lot in my backhand. This is something that I feel very good about, that it has become better.

“And I increased my movement. Now I move around the court much faster than at the beginning of the year. I began to maintain pace and speed much better, and began to defend better.”

Despite giving himself some praise, Rublev had a lot more to say about what he wanted to improve in the off-season, comparing himself to the four players ranked above him.

“What needs to be improved? A ton of everything,” claimed Rublev. “The main thing, of course, is psychology. This is what I miss the most compared to Novak Djokovic, Daniil Medvedev, Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner. They are much more stable than me psychologically.”

He continued, “As for the technical aspects, the movement can be further improved. And we (my team) need to improve my second serve. This component clearly stands out to me from a bad point of view compared to everyone else in the top 10. Everyone serves the second one stronger than me.”

Rublev has often been seen losing his cool on court, having even resulted in smashing his knee with his racket at the ATP Finals.

And the Monte Carlo Masters champion believes improving his temperament, net game and second serve would make a big difference next year, “Access to the net needs to be improved. If, with my game, I will be able to finish off not only simple balls but be able to unexpectedly reach the net – this will give me a big advantage. Even if I only improve my psychology and second serve, it will be a completely different tennis.”

Even though the 2023 ATP season is over for Rublev, he is still expected to play at the ‘Ultimate Tennis Showdown’ exhibition event in London next month.

Inside the baseline…

It has been another impressive season for Andrey Rublev, who comes across as being too harsh on himself sometimes. Therefore, it is difficult to disagree that working on the psychological aspect of his game would do wonders for his overall tennis, as you very rarely see anyone react in the way that he does, let alone a top 10 player.

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.