Rodionov, Kukushkin Last Seeds Standing At Open Comunidad De Madrid

Jurij Rodionov (photo: A.S./Press A.S./ATP Ch.MAD)

MADRID/STARNBERG, April 12, 2024

Two seeded players have reached the semi-finals of the III Open Comunidad de Madrid. Kazakh veteran Mikhail Kukushkin battled past second-seeded Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas 7-6(3), 4-6, 7-6(5). The No. 8 seed of the ATP Challenger Tour 100 clay-court event capitalized on four of his five break-point chances to seal victory in three hours and 53 minutes.

“After a match like that, you always feel very tired, but let’s see how I wake up tomorrow,” said Kukushkin. “It was a very long match with tough points, so I am happy to have come through it. I like this heated atmosphere. I think it’s good for tennis when fans support one player or another, especially here playing against a Spaniard. I’ve played many matches like this in my life, especially in the Davis Cup, so I’m used to it. This kind of atmosphere really helps tennis and improves the game itself. It won’t be easy to recover physically, but I’ll do physio, massage; I already have experience in recovery.”

Kukushkin will next take on Stefano Napolitano of Italy, who defeated Swiss qualifier Marc-Andrea Huesler 6-2, 7-6(5) in one hour and 43 minutes.

Meanwhile in the top half of the draw, No. 6 seed Jurij Rodionov of Austria beat Benjamin Hassan from Germany 6-1, 6-4. The World No. 124 converted four of his six break-point opportunities and won 58 per cent of the total points played to advance in 55 minutes.

“It was a strange situation because fifteen minutes before the match, we were moved to a different court (due to the extended duration of the match on Centre Court), and it was difficult to concentrate because the atmosphere from the Kukushkin-Ramos match was like a Davis Cup atmosphere,” said Rodionov. “However, I am still satisfied to have been able to pull through the match. I had enough time to adapt to the altitude, and the fast clay courts suit my game, so I am happy to be able to play well here.”

Up next for Rodionov will be Leandro Riedi of Switzerland, who stopped the run of Brazilian teenager Joao Fonseca, winning 6-3, 7-6(4) in one hour and 57 minutes.