Home Sports Humbert defeats Bublik to seal ATP 500 glory at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

Humbert defeats Bublik to seal ATP 500 glory at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

by Staff Reporter
Humbert defeats Bublik to seal ATP 500 glory at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

Ugo Humbert produced a ruthless masterclass to defeat Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik in straight sets and seal ATP 500 victory in the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Saturday night.

The French No5 seed, who rises to a career-high World No14 after his heroics in Dubai, made it a clean sweep of six titles in six ATP finals with a clinical 6-4, 6-3 dismantling of No7 seed Bublik, the World No19, in front of a capacity Centre Court crowd at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium.

Humbert, who defeated compatriot Gael Monfils, Britain’s Andy Murray, World No8 Hubert Hurkacz, and World No4 Daniil Medvedev to reach the final, unleashed his full repertoire of booming forehands and laser-like double-handed backhands to eclipse Bublik, who progressed past 2022 Dubai champion Andrey Rublev in a dramatic semi-final, which saw the No2 seed disqualified for unsportsmanlike conduct.

After tight opening exchanges where the pair were evenly matched, the final stayed on-serve until the 10th game when Humbert, who had failed to convert break points in Bublik’s two previous service games, finally broke the Kazakh’s resistance to clinch the first set 6-4.

With Bublik delighting the Dubai crowd with a combination of whipped forehands and a deft array of dropshots, Humbert, relaxed and controlled, raced into a 3-1 second set lead after breaking Bublik. From there, the 25-year-old left-hander relied on his own dominant serve – unbroken throughout the final – to close out the match on his second Championship point.

“I played a fantastic level all through the week, but it was not easy,” said Humbert, who claims the winner’s prize of US$ 550,140. “I really don’t know how I stayed calm. I have too much respect for [Bublik], he’s such a nice guy on and off the court, and congratulations to him on a great start to the year.”

A beaten but upbeat Bublik reflected: “This week has had almost everything for me, and I can’t wait to come back here again in 2025. Before the final, I thought if I won I would dedicate it to my son, but sorry, maybe next time,” said the 26-year-old, who pockets the runner-up prize of US$ 296,000.

Men’s doubles final

In the men’s doubles final, the Netherlands’ Tallon Griekspoor and Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff narrowly defeated Croatia’s Ivan Dodig and the USA’s Austin Krajicek 6-4, 4-6, 10-6. With a pair of service breaks enough to settle the opening two sets, Griekspoor and Struff came from 1-3 down in the deciding super tiebreak, winning nine of the last 12 points to claim a maiden Dubai title and shared prize pool of US$ 180,700. Beaten finalists Dodig and Krajicek share a runners-up purse of US$ 96,370.

“It’s the first time we’ve played together, so maybe we should keep it one week,” Griekspoor joked during the post-match ceremony. “We played really well and had a great time, it was a lot of fun on court. I had such a pleasure on court this week.”

Humbert defeats Bublik to seal ATP 500 glory at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

The official prize ceremony was conducted by His Highness Sheikh Hasher Bin Maktoum Al Maktoum, President of the UAE Tennis Federation; Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free; Ramesh Cidambi, COO of Dubai Duty Free and Chairman of the Tournament Organising Committee; Salah Tahlak, Joint COO of Dubai Duty Free, and Tournament Director of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships; Nasser Yousef Al-Marqouzi, Secretary General of the UAE Tennis Federation; and Sinead El Sibai, Senior Vice President Marketing of Dubai Duty Free.

“This magical evening has provided a fitting end to a memorable Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships fortnight. We have seen crowds of over 45,000-plus revel in match after match of wonderful tennis during the men’s ATP 500 week. Our congratulations go to the 2024 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships winners, Men’s Singles champion, Ugo Humbert, and our Doubles champions, Tallon Griekspoor and Jan-Lennard Struff – all truly worthy winners,” said Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free.

“This year’s ATP 500 at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships has, once again, exceeded our expectations with a week of scintillating tennis, unbelievable moments on and off court, and enthusiastic grandstands. Thank you to all the players, officials, and fans who have contributed to the runaway success of the 32nd Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. We look forward to welcoming you back to Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium in 12 months’ time,” said Ramesh Cidambi, COO of Dubai Duty Free and Chairman of the Tournament Organising Committee.

Salah Talak, Joint COO of Dubai Duty Free, and Tournament Director of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, added: “As it does every year, the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships continue to deliver world-class ATP action. I would like to thank all our ATP players for their unwavering commitment and passion, as well as officials and tournament sponsors for their continued support.”

The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships is owned and organised by Dubai Duty Free and held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

tanvir@dubainewsweek.com

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