Aslan Karatsev: I went from playing Moscow qualifying five times to winning title

Russian tennis star Aslan Karatsev says winning it all in Moscow is a “dream come true” for him. 

Karatsev, 28, captured his first Moscow title on Sunday after beating former world No. 3 Marin Cilic 6-2 6-4 in the final. 

Karatsev was playing in the Moscow main draw for the fifth time in his career. 

For the first time in his career, Karatsev made the cut for the Moscow main draw and didn’t have to play qualifying.

In his previous four Moscow main draw appearances, Karatsev never made it past the round-of-16. 

“It is a dream come true,” Karatsev said in his on-court interview, per the ATP website. “It is a tournament where I have played in qualifying at and now I am winning the tournament. Thank you for all of your support. It was a very nervous final game, I hit a double fault and then on break point there was that long rally, but I managed to win it in the end.”

Karatsev dedicated the Moscow title to his team and family. 

“First of all, I would like to dedicate my win to my parents, my mum and my father. All my relatives and all of my friends,” Karatsev added.

Karatsev routinely handled Cilic 

Karatsev made a perfect start to the match, having broken Cilic twice to comfortably win the opener. 

After winning the first set, Karatsev broke Cilic in the seventh game of the second set and served out for the title in the 10th game. 

Upon arriving to Moscow from Indian Wells, Karatsev revealed he was struggling with jetlag. 

“It’s quite difficult [to adjust]. The first two days I wasn’t able to sleep on time. I was waking up at 2 a.m. and then I tried to sleep again. I’d fall asleep at 7, get a few hours more from 7 to 10 and then during the day I told myself not to sleep,” Karatsev told the ATP Tour at the start of the week. “The first day I couldn’t manage it, I fell asleep early in the day. Then the second day I got better, and then today I feel more or less fine. [It’s] just getting better day by day.”