December 8, 2018
Home favourite Greg Rusedski thrilled the home crowd in London on Saturday evening, defeating former World No. 2 and recent Legends Cup winner Tommy Haas 6-3, 1-6, 10-8 at Champions Tennis at the Royal Albert Hall.
It was a special moment for Rusedski, whose son was in the crowd as well as friends he had not seen in a long time. The Brit wanted to put on a show for them, and he did just that.
“I was really pleased with the way I played, I felt it was a big improvement from Friday night,” Rusedski said. “I thought I played a good first set, but second was not as good as I would have liked. Tonight I changed things up a bit, volleyed a bit more. It was a lot of fun.”
Rusedski was unable to cling to a 6/2 lead in the Champions Tie-break, allowing Haas to level affairs at 8/8. But despite winning six fewer points than his opponent in the match, the left-hander managed to triumph after 69 minutes.
However, with Haas pushing the match to a decider, the German guaranteed his spot in the championship match, while Rusedski was pushed to third place in Group A.
“Overall it was all good fun, played some good tennis out there in front of a great crowd,” Haas said. “I’m very happy I was able to move around… happy to be out there in such an awesome venue.”
Haas will meet Juan Carlos Ferrero in Sunday’s final, as the defending champion saved match point to beat former World No. 2 Goran Ivanisevic 4-6, 6-1, 11-9.
“I definitely think we both enjoyed this match, playing good serves and entertaining rallies and hopefully the crowd enjoyed that,” Ferrero said. “I felt a little bit better than yesterday and I hope to increase my fitness level again for tomorrow’s final.”
Ivanisevic roared back from 0/4 in the Champions Tie-break and would earn match point at 10/9, but Ferrero was ultimately able to claim the victory. He is the only player to move through group play at the Royal Albert Hall this year without a loss.
“I think I played a good match today, but I have to admit Ferrero is better, younger and moving well from all sides of the court,” Ivanisevic said. “He served really well throughout the match.”
12.00pm: Third Place Match: Xavier Malisse vs. Mark Philippoussis
Enqvist/Murray vs. Henman/Rusedski
5.00pm: Singles Championship: Haas vs. Ferrero
Bahrami/Murray vs. Pernfors/Ivanisevic