Andrey Rublev is not caught up with being Russian No 1

Andrey Rublev antics

Andrey Rublev insists that he doesn’t need to be the Russian no 1 to feel validated in his game.

Rublev was briefly the top-ranked Russian on tour until Daniil Medvedev’s resurgence put him in the shade again.

However, Rublev isn’t burdened by any pressure to be the best from Russia or anywhere else.

He believes that things can only place you under pressure if you allow them to invade your mental space.

“The pressure is always there but it depends on you, if you feel that there is a lot of pressure, then there is a lot of pressure, but it depends on you,” Rublev told ESTO.

“It’s not about feeling pressure or not, it depends on what you do with it because everyone feels pressure, but it depends on you and what you do,” he added.

Rublev doesn’t feel the need to try and keep up with or surpass Medvedev or compatriot Karen Khachanov.

“I don’t feel responsible for being one of the best Russian tennis players and my goal is simple, to be better in my tennis, if I’m good in my tennis then everything is simply getting better in my results,” he said.

Rublev has acknowledged that he can be very hard on himself and can throw himself into a downward spiral.

“Everyone has their own weaknesses.

“My weakness is the mental one, and little by little I’m trying to improve that.”

Rublev has found Grand Slams a tough nut to crack admitting that his emotions will often overwhelm him as happened in Paris last season.

Asked then what went wrong, he said: “Everything mental. I couldn’t manage, all the time I couldn’t manage the emotions.

“And now it was the closest ever time that I was able to go through to be in semi-finals. Then again, the same thing, I didn’t manage the emotions.

“I don’t know if I did it better as compared to other matches. At least I did a better score and I was closer than other matches, but still, is the same thing.”

Rublev believes he is making gains in this regard, doing better at the US Open late last year.

“Most people make mistakes and that’s how it works,” he mused.

Athletes do them too, that’s how we are. I have great tennis to reach the next level, but I avoided it myself. In New York I did better on the pitch as a person, I was better as a player, I was more professional. I was able to handle the moments of tension and difficulty, but it takes time.”

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