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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Thursday January 19, 2023

Asked what he said to Jenson Brooksby after losing to the American in four sets on Day 4 at the Australian Open, Casper Ruud didn’t pull any punches:

“I said, Well played, and that he was annoyingly good today,” the Norwegian told reports, with a smile.

Tennis Express

Ruud spent the afternoon under the American’s spell, betwixt and between, getting jerked and jabbed in rallies as he saw his short-lived run as highest-ranked player in the men’s singles draw go up in flames in Melbourne.

Credit to Ruud for saving three match points to force a fourth set, but the Norwegian never really solved the Brooksby riddle as he was neatly bundled up and packaged out in set four.

Chalk it up as a learning experience? Sounds like Ruud is still trying to make sense of it.

“Like I said earlier, there were many sort of interesting rallies where we were rallying back and forth, playing a little–not cat and mouse, but he had attack, maybe I came back and was controlling the point, and then somehow he guessed right or came back in the rally again.”

Ruud said it was frustrating to feel he had the upper hand in rallies and then to suddenly have the rug pulled out from under him.

“It's frustrating when you feel like you have the momentum in a rally, and then a player pulls out a shot like he did in the last game, for example, where he does that slice down the line, on the line, which is the only shot he can play and he's able to do it,” he said. “It's frustrating and annoying at the same time, but at the same time I give him credit, because he stayed in there and fought well. Physically it was a tough match. It was close to four hours and four sets. He fought through well and didn't seem to be affected by the duration of the match.”

There was something else Ruud told Brooksby at the net, before he headed to his chair, picked up his gear and walked off the court for the last time at this year’s Australian Open:

“I just said, Good luck for the rest of the tournament, as well.”