HALLE, Germany (AP) — Last year’s beaten finalist Andrey Rublev lost to Nikoloz Basilashvili 7-6 (1), 6-4 in the first round of the Halle Open on Monday.
Rublev, who won titles in Marseille, Dubai, and Belgrade this season, was bidding to go one better in Halle after losing last year’s decider to Ugo Humbert. But Basilashvili stunned the third-seeded Russian and avenged his defeat to Rublev last year.
Basilashvili next faces Germany’s Oscar Otte or Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic.
Defending champion Humbert was made to fight hard but ultimately came through against Moldovan qualifier Radu Albot 6-7 (4), 7-6 (4), 7-5. The French player next faces the fifth-seeded Hubert Hurkacz or American qualifier Maxime Cressy.
Also, Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta defeated Danish teenager Holger Rune 6-3, 7-6 (5) and Belarus' Ilya Ivashka rallied to beat home favorite Jan-Lennard Struff 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (5).
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