Aslan Karatsev claims first career title in Dubai

Sep 2, 2020; Flushing Meadows, New York, USA; Lloyd Harris of South Africa hits a backhand against David Goffin of Belgium (not pictured) on day three of the 2020 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

Aslan Karatsev recorded 27 winners and won his first career ATP title on Saturday with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over South African qualifier Lloyd Harris in the final of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships in the United Arab Emirates.

Karatsev received entry as a wild card and staved off eight aces from Harris in the 75-minute match. The 27-year-old Russian, who came out of nowhere to reach the Australian Open semifinals last month, is 12-2 in 2021 with the losses coming to top-ranked Novak Djokoic and fourth-ranked Dominic Thiem.

“I am really happy with my performance and really happy with my game,” Karatsev said afterward. “At the beginning of the year, (I was happy) to play an Australian Open semifinal and to show a great level. After the Australian Open, I kept going, practicing hard. … I showed a fantastic week and a good game.”

Harris was also attempting to win his first title. One of his highlights of the week was a second-round upset of Thiem.

–Field Level Media