The fourth-seeded Russian improved to 28-2 at ATP 500 tournaments since the ATP Tour resumed from the COVID-19 suspension in August 2020 with a 7-6(4), 6-2 victory over 2011 champion Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany in 81 minutes.
“I am happy with my performance to reach the semi-finals for the first time,” said Rublev, who hit 29 winners to book a place in his sixth ATP Tour semi-final of the year. “The first set was really tough. He was 3/0 up in the tie-break and I came back, which was the key. After the first set, I think he mentally went down and I was pumped up. I hit a couple of good returns in the first game of the second set.”
Rublev, currently at a career-high No. 7 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, will next meet Lloyd Harris of South Africa or Georgian qualifier Nikoloz Basilashvili. Rublev beat Harris in the 2020 Adelaide International final and is 2-2 versus Basilashvili in their ATP Head2Head series.
Wild card Kohlschreiber did very little wrong in a high-quality first set at the OWL Arena in Halle, but let slip a 3/0 lead in the tie-break. From that point, Rublev won 16 of the next 21 points, securing the 49-minute opener with a fine backhand slice winner down the line, and took a 2-0 lead in the second set.
Rublev began to read Kohlschreiber’s serve and broke with a backhand winner for 5-2 in the second set. The 23-year-old soon closed out his 32nd match win of the season (32-9 record), which includes the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament crown (d. Fucsovics) in March. He also finished as runner-up in his first ATP Masters 1000 final in April at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters (l. to Tsitsipas).
Kohlschreiber, 37, was attempting to reach an ATP Tour semi-final for the first time since the 2019 ASB Classic in Auckland (l. to Sandgren).