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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Friday March 1, 2024

Alex De Minaur

Alex de Minaur ran his Acapulco winning streak to nine on Friday, and will faced Norway's Ruud in the final.

Photo Source: TTV

Alex de Minaur outlasted Jack Draper to lock down his ninth consecutive victory at Acapulco on Friday night, and will face Norway’s Casper Ruud for the title as he bids to become the first man to defend the Acapulco title since David Ferrer in 2013.

Tennis Express

De Minaur advanced when Jack Draper retired due to fatigue in the final set with the Aussie leading 6-3, 2-6, 4-0. 25-year-old De Minaur, who needs to win on Saturday to remain inside the Top 10, is into his 16th ATP final.

He played a near flawless opening set against the 22-year-old Brit, but lost the plot as Draper steamed through the middle set behind two breaks of serve.

But the Brit was clearly feeling it after the second set, and needed a medical timeout before continuing. He was a shell of himself in the third before he finally pulled the plug down a double break.

De Minaur jumps to 14-4 on the season, he recently reached the final in Rotterdam, and has won his last six ATP semifinals.

Ruud the Cockroach

After his 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Holger Rune, Casper Ruud likened himself to a cockroach. He was truly resilient across his seventh meeting with the 20-year-old Dane, and played from behind in the scoreboard for nearly all of the night.

Not until the ninth game of the final set, when Ruud broke critically for 5-4, did the Norwegian find his nose in front of his rival.

“Kind of like a cockroach, not going anywhere, just creeping back in,” he said. He was more than that of course, but he wasn’t nearly as dynamic as Rune was on this evening. The Dane scattered thunderbolts all over the court through the first two and a half sets, with Ruud patiently taking body blows and doing what he could to take his opponent out of rhythm.

He used a few important breaks to gain momentum, and by the time he had finally pulled ahead (from 4-2, 40-15 down) in the final set, he was ready to close out a masterful comeback.

Ruud improves to 6-1 against Rune, and 13-2 on the season – he will bid for his 11th ATP title against De Minaur.

The pair have not met since the Next Gen ATP Finals in 2019, with De Minaur winning in straight sets.


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