The wins just keep on coming for world No. 8 Andrey Rublev. On Friday, the No. 5 seed surged past defending Vienna champion Dominic Thiem, 7-6 (5), 6-2, to reach the semifinals of the Erste Bank Open and improve his 2020 record to 37-7.

Thiem held the only two break points of the first set in the third game, but Rublev wiped both away with a pair of powerful first serves up the T. In the tiebreak, Thiem overcooked a forehand to go down a late minibreak, 4-6, and two points later, Rublev came up clutch with his seventh ace of the set.

The Russian showed no signs of slowing down, opening a 2-1 break advantage in the second set with a stellar inside-out forehand/inside-in forehand sequence. The home crowd was unable to will Thiem back into the contest, as the No. 2 seed appeared to be bothered by a right foot injury. A double fault saw Thiem go down a double break and he made just 43 percent of his first serves in defeat. Rublev finished with 30 winners to 20 unforced errors to even his head-to-head series with the Austrian to 2-2.


Red-hot Rublev upstages defending Vienna champion Thiem; Anderson wins

Red-hot Rublev upstages defending Vienna champion Thiem; Anderson wins

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Rublev is looking to win his fifth title of the year, having recently triumphed on home soil in St. Petersburg. For a spot in the final, the 23-year-old will battle 2018 titlist Kevin Anderson. The two-time former major finalist ousted No. 4 seed Daniil Medvedev, 6-4, 7-6 (5), firing nine aces to zero double faults to take the pair’s first meeting in 90 minutes.

Playing with a protected ranking this week, Anderson’s run will enable the 34-year-old to get back inside the Top 100. Saturday will mark four weeks since Rublev dismissed Anderson in straight sets to win their third-round encounter at Roland Garros.