Holger Rune reacts to winning first ATP title after ‘worst way possible’ end to final

Rising Danish star Holger Rune captured his maiden ATP title on Sunday but afterward admitted it was probably the worst way to win an ATP final. 

Rune, 18, was 4-3 down to Botic van de Zandschulp in the Munich final when the Dutchman walked to the chair umpire and retired the match. 

Van de Zandschulp, who was also playing his first ATP final in Munich, was dealing with a chest issue and he was forced to quit the match. 

“This was probably the worst way to win a final,” Rune said after the final, as quoted on the ATP Tour website. “I was obviously expecting a very tough match and he came out very strong. I just wish him all the best, a speedy recovery, and we all just hope to see him back on the court very soon.”

Rune was twice down by a break before van de Zandschulp retired

Van de Zandschulp claimed the first break in the second game to take a 2-0 lead. 

Rune broke back van de Zandschulp in the third game but lost his serve once again in the fourth game as van de Zandschulp led 4-1 after the opening five games of the match.

Rune served out the sixth game to reduce the deficit to 4-2, before breaking back van de Zandschulp in the seventh game. 

Rune had two consecutive game points in the eighth game when van de Zandschulp decided to end the match. 

Rune’s run to the Munich title included a shock win over No. 1 seed Alexander Zverev. 

“I’m super happy, of course,” Rune admitted. “As I said, not the way I want it to end, but if I look through the week, what a week. I played some unbelievable tennis, really fighting my way through it. To be playing here in Munich and winning my first ATP title in front of such a brilliant crowd, I couldn’t really ask for more.”