Tennis

Casper Ruud ATP Finals Performance – Promising or Cause for Concern?

The ATP Finals concluded just a few days ago, and it really was a spectacular event. Yet now that the dust has settled, so to speak, I wanted to address an interesting topic that has arisen since. As you no doubt know, Casper Ruud made the finals of the tournament before losing to Novak Djokovic in a great match. Along the way, Ruud also beat Taylor Fritz, Auger-Aliassime, as well as Andrey Rublev in the semi-finals. 

This wrapped up a pretty fantastic year for the young man from Norway. Casper Ruud made the finals of two Grand Slam tournaments – the French Open and the US Open. He also made the finals of a Masters 1000 event in Miami, as well as the finals of the ATP End of Year Finals, of course. This run of form saw Ruud reach a career-high ranking of number 2 back in September 2022. And following his performance at the ATP Finals, Ruud has secured a year-end ranking of number 3.

Casper Ruud ATP Finals

By anyone’s standards, this is a solid year on the ATP Tour. However, despite his series of strong tournament results, there is one ‘cause for concern’ that has fans talking. This cause for concern is the fact that Ruud just cannot get over the line in important finals. And of course, if you are to become a legend of the game, you need to win these matches. 

Personally, I don’t think that this is a huge cause for concern as of yet. But there are some things that he needs to change in order to win these finals. I’ve shared my thoughts on the subject below.

What Casper Ruud Must Change to Become a True Champion

I know – many of you reading this will be stating that Ruud is already a champion. After all, he has achieved a year-end ranking of number 3, which is pretty epic. But as stated above, a true champion is the guy who manages to make it over the line and win the biggest trophies in the sport. And on that note, here is my personal opinion on how Ruud can achieve this in 2023:

Too Much Respect for His Opponents

This has become a common theme of Ruud’s big matches against guys like Djokovic and Nadal. The first example of this was the Roland Garros 2022 final played against Rafael Nadal. Sure, I understand that Nadal is the greatest player to have ever lived. Yet Ruud does have the weapons and other attributes to beat Nadal on the clay. However, he was blown out. 

As for the ATP Finals match against Djokovic, again, I feel that he just put too much respect on Djokovic’s name to believe that he deserved to win.

The ‘Nice Guy’ Approach

This links closely with the huge respect that Ruud puts on his opponents in finals matches. For me, I feel that he is somewhat unwilling to get down and dirty in important matches to come away with the win. I’m not saying he shouldn’t be a nice guy – please don’t get me wrong. But if you compare his on-court attitude compared to someone like Novak Djokovic in big moments, it really is night and day.

About the author

Gavin Davison

Gavin is a full-time copywriter based in the United Kingdom. He has previously played NCAA college tennis in the USA and competed in many international events throughout his younger days. He still plays competitively and follows both the ATP & WTA Tours closely. His favourite player is Roger Federer.