‘Absolutely adorable’: Mixed doubles duo Pavlyuchenkova and Rublev win hearts on way to booking Olympic final place for ROC
Dynamic double act Pavlyuchenkova and Rublev took a super tiebreak 13-11 after splitting the first two sets 5-7 6-4 against their Aussie rivals.
The Russian pair saved match point in a tense finale, recovering from 4-6 down to clinch victory in a gutsy display.
There is the chance of an all-ROC final as fellow Russians Aslan Karatsev and Elena Vesnina took on Serbian pairing Novak Djokovic and Nina Stojanovic in the other mixed doubles semi-final.
Fans online have been in thrall to the Rublev-Pavlyuchenkova pairing in Tokyo, which is the first time the duo have played together.
Side note: really happy to see Andrey Rublev is guaranteed a medal after the disastrous start he had to the #TokyoOlympics. He & Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova make for a terrific mixed doubles pair, and I hope they continue showing the same kind of infectious enthusiasm in the final.— Musab (@Musab_Abid) July 30, 2021
Their run to the final and a guaranteed medal also partly mitigates a disappointing singles campaign for Rublev, 23, when he lost in the first round to home hero Kei Nishikori.
Pavlyuchenkova, 30, had reached the quarter-finals in the women’s singles before being knocked out in three sets by Swiss star Belinda Bencic.
THEY HAVE DONE IT!Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Andrey Rublev save a match point and stuns Ashleigh Barty and John Peers 5-7, 6-4, [12-10] to reach the FINAL of the Tokyo Olympics!You need to replay that MP save from Nastia 24/7![📸: Alexey Filippov / Sputnik] pic.twitter.com/4ceC6YybYI— WTA Russians (@WTArussians) July 30, 2021
Into the gold medal match!👏🏆Considering they have never partnered together, this is really impressive. Pavlyuchenkova: 5 doubles titles, highest ranking #21 Rublev: 2 doubles titles, highest ranking #67#ROC#Tokyo2021#tennis@NastiaPav@AndreyRublev97pic.twitter.com/0VqBX0ZH1a— The Tennis Stats (@thetennisstats) July 30, 2021