In a rare wildcard-qualifier final Aslan Karatsev took home his first career title Saturday beating Lloyd Harris 6-3, 6-2 to win the Dubai 500 event.
The 27-year-old Karatsev was a complete unknown 40 days ago having just three career wins. Now, he’s made an Australian Open semifinalist and an ATP title winner.
“I am really happy with my performance and really happy with my game,” said Karatsev. “At the beginning of the year, to play an Australian Open semifinal, to show a great level. After the Australian Open, I kept going, practicing hard.
“I arrived here with more belief than in Doha. I showed a fantastic week and a good game.”
The qualifier Harris falls to 0-2 in ATP finals, but leaves after a good week of wins which included Dominic Thiem and Denis Shapovalov.
“There are so many positives to take from this week, coming through seven matches,” the 24-year-old Harris said. “Aslan today was just too good. Sometimes it happens like that and you have just got to take all the big [positives] from the week, move forward and take them into the next tournaments.”
Karatsev, who began the year ranked No. 112, will see his ranking rise into the Top 30 from No. 42.
“You never know when [success] is coming,” said Karatsev. “I did a good job with my team, with my coach and it has happened now.”
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