Jim van Wijk, PA
Holger Rune upset world number one Novak Djokovic to reach the semi-finals of the Italian Open.
The 20-year-old Dane came through 6-2 4-6 6-2 against the defending champion in a rain-hit encounter in Rome.
Seventh seed Rune raced through the opening set in 39 minutes before Djokovic was seen to by the physio early in the second and given some medication before the weather forced play to be suspended.
FEARLESS HOLGER ⭐️
The moment @holgerrune2003 moved 2-1 in his head-to-head with Djokovic and reached his 3rd Masters 1000 semi-final! @InteBNLdItalia | #IBI23 pic.twitter.com/x6euAiIibP
— ATP Tour (@atptour) May 17, 2023
Top seed Djokovic – who beat Britain’s Cameron Norrie in a feisty fourth-round match – levelled the match soon after the resumption, but it was Rune who pulled clear in the decider.
Rune, making his tournament debut, opened a 4-0 lead after a double break before closing out the match for successive victories in his matches against the Serbian.
“It’s really a big win for me,” Rune said in his on-court interview.
It’s always special, no matter the result.
See you next year, @DjokerNole ❤️#IBI23 | @atptour pic.twitter.com/J817VmRgiR
— Internazionali BNL d’Italia (@InteBNLdItalia) May 17, 2023
“Obviously I did it last year in Paris as well, but every match is a huge challenge for me when I play against Novak.
“He is one of the greatest that’s ever played the game. I knew I had to be at my best and I said it yesterday, and I was today.
“I am super proud of myself and I enjoyed every moment out there, but I stay humble of course. I have a lot to achieve.”