Five things to know about Hubert Hurkacz ahead of first Masters 1000 final
Hubert Hurkacz defeated Andrey Rublev to set up the biggest match of his life as he bids to win a first Masters 1000 title in Miami.
Ahead of Sunday’s final against Italian sensation Jannik Sinner, Tennishead looks at five things you should know about the 24-year-old Pole.
1) Family of tennis stars
The parents of Hubert Hurkacz are Krzysztof Hurkacz and Zosia Maliszewska-Hurkacz. His mother was the No 1 junior in Poland and his uncles also played tennis competitively, while his grandfather was an international volleyball player.
Hurkacz also has a little sister, Nika, who also plays tennis and is hoping to be a professional. She is 10 years younger than Hubert.
2) Hurkacz closes his eyes when ball-striking
Despite all tennis players being taught to keep their eye on the ball, Hurkacz does quite the opposite.
“I confess, it’s true, I close my eyes when I hit the ball. In fact, I’ve probably always played like that, and it’s been a while since I’ve been noticed,” Hurkacz told L’Equipe in 2019.
3) His coach compared his style to Andy Murray
Hubert Hurkacz’ coach Craig Boynton, who coached Jim Courier, Mardy Fish, John Isner and still coaches Steve Johnson, compared his style to Andy Murray.
“I think if you look at him, people have said he kind of mirrors Andy Murray with a similar routine on returns, a little bit of a similar backhand,” Boynton said.
“He’s a little taller than Andy. Andy’s movement was phenomenal. But Hubi’s a very good athlete, too.”
4) Hurkacz is only the second Polish man to win an ATP event
After turning professional in 2015 aged 18, Hurkacz won his first ATP Tour title in Winston-Salem in 2019, becoming the second Polish man in history to win an ATP event, after Wojtek Fibak.
Since then, the 24-year-old won his second title at Delray Beach and could add a third if he beats Jannik Sinner on Sunday.
5) Yet to produce his best in the Majors
Despite having success in ATP Tour events, Hurkacz is yet to find form in Grand Slams and best of five matches.
Currently, the Pole has only made it past the second round on one occasion when he beat Leonardo Mayer at Wimbledon in 2019.
The 24-year-old went on to face eventual winner Novak Djokovic, losing by three sets to one.
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