French Open 2022: Casper Ruud defeats Marin Cilic to set up final clash against ‘idol’ Rafael Nadal
Casper Ruud broke into the 2022 Roland-Garros final.©AFP
Casper Ruud became the first Norwegian to reach a Grand Slam final on Friday when he set up a French Open title clash with 13-time champion Rafael Nadal, the man he described as his “idol”. . World number eight Ruud beat Croatian Marin Cilic 3-6, 6-4, 6-2, 6-2 in a semi-final which was delayed when a protester ran onto the pitch and tied himself up by the neck in the fillet. She wore a shirt with the slogan: “We have 1028 days left” before being finally released by the security agents. The game resumed after 15 minutes of delay.
Ruud fired 16 aces and 41 winners past 2014 US Open champion Cilic.
“It was a great game from my side, I didn’t start the best but Marin had a really good first set,” said the 23-year-old Norwegian.
“I admire Rafa. He is the perfect example of how to behave on the pitch, never give up and never complain. He has been my idol all my life.
“He’s the last Big Three player I’ve ever played against, so I guess now is the perfect time. Playing him in a Grand Slam final will be great. I hope for him too, playing against a student of his academy.”
Earlier on Friday, Nadal reached the final in Paris for the 14th time when Alexander Zverev was forced to retire with an ankle injury after falling on the pitch.
Nadal was 7-6 (10/8), 6-6 ahead when the 25-year-old world number three resigned.
Nadal, who turned 36 on Friday, will play in his 30th Grand Slam final and is aiming to become the oldest men’s champion at Roland Garros and win a record 22nd major title.
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