Casper Ruud inspired by Roger Federer
World No 2 Casper Ruud said on Wednesday that he felt a bit of Roger Federer had rubbed off on him.
Ruud was part of Federer’s Laver Cup send off last week.
The 23-year-old Norwegian reached the final of the US Open earlier this month and then was surrounded by the cream of men’s tennis at the Laver Cup in London for Federer’s last hurrah.
He enjoyed seeing up close the chemistry between Federer and his long-time rival and friend Rafael Nadal. The duo played together in doubles for Federer’s farewell.
“Having those two together in Roger’s last match was incredible to witness,” Ruud said at the Korea Open in Seoul.
“It was very fun to be around them. They joke with each other all the time.
“Obviously they’re older and at a later stage in their career and it’s inspiring to see that they have the motivation to keep going and that they are eager to play and enjoy each other’s company.
“I was lucky and I was honoured that I was able to be a part of the team. I learned a lot and took a lot of joy with me from the experience.”
The top seed said that the pressure is off in the South Korean capital, where he faces 111th-ranked Nicolas Jarry in his opener on Thursday.
“There’s always room for improvement,” said Casper Ruud.
“(But) I feel that I have done very well this year, so if it doesn’t go extremely well (at the tournament), it’s not going to matter too much.”
Briton Cameron Norrie said on Wednesday that he aims to reach the very top of the game but first he wants to win the Korea Open this week in his pursuit of the season-ending ATP Finals.
The 27-year-old has won two titles this year, making it into the top 10 for the first time in his career and reaching the semi-finals at Wimbledon.
“We’ve got two weeks in Asia now, here and in Japan next week,” Norrie, the world number eight, said in Seoul.
“My goal is to reach the Finals in Turin and I’m planning to set myself up for that here.”
His semi-final defeat to eventual champion Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon was a career highlight, but Norrie does not want to stop there.
“Being British, Wimbledon comes with a little bit more pressure and a little higher expectations, but I was able to handle that pretty well,” said Norrie, fresh from Roger Federer’s farewell at the Laver Cup in London.
“My goal is to reach world number one and to do that I’m going to have to win a Grand Slam as well.”
Norrie, the second seed at the Korea Open, faces World No 163 Kaichi Uchida of Japan in his opener on Thursday.
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