Holger Rune is currently eighth in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin as he tries to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time. But this week with three tournaments — the Kinoshita Group Japan Open Tennis Championships, the BNP Paribas Nordic Open and the European Open — being played, the battle for a spot at the season finale could drastically change.
Rune is currently 145 points ahead of ninth-placed Taylor Fritz. The Dane will focus on what he can control in Stockholm, where he is the top seed and defending champions. The 20-year-old would add 250 points to his total with a title.
“Definitely one of the goals is to be able to get into Turin, the Finals, at the end of the year,” Rune told the media at the China Open in Beijing. He later added: “I'm going to try to focus on what I do instead of what everybody else is doing.”
|5) Andrey Rublev||
|6) Stefanos Tsitsipas||3,615|
|7) Alexander Zverev||3,415|
|8) Holger Rune||3,110|
|9) Taylor Fritz||2,965|
|10) Casper Ruud||2,795|
|11) Hubert Hurkacz||2,775|
|12) Tommy Paul||2,525|
From sixth through 18th place in the Live Race, 12 of the 13 players are in action this week. The only exception is 16th-placed Grigor Dimitrov, who made the Shanghai semi-finals.
Every player from ninth through 15th place is competing in Tokyo, where the champion will add 500 points to his tally. If Fritz wins the title, he will leapfrog Rune in the Live Race no matter how the Dane performs in Stockholm.
Fifth-placed Andrey Rublev, who is not in action this week, built a 660-point advantage over sixth-placed Stefanos Tsitsipas by advancing to the Shanghai final. Tsitsipas can claw closer to Rublev and further secure his standing with a deep run at the European Open in Antwerp, where he is the top seed.
Seventh seed Alexander Zverev, a two-time Nitto ATP Finals champion, is playing in Tokyo. The German is 305 points ahead of Rune and could extend his advantage this week. He is trying to qualify for the season finale one year after suffering a severe ankle injury at Roland Garros, which kept him out for the rest of the season.
“It's good to be back in the Top 10. It's good to be back in contention for Turin as well,” Zverev told ATP Media. “If I continue playing the way I was playing the past few months I think I have great chances.
“Coming back from an injury like that where I was out for seven months, where I didn't know what my level would be coming back, being in contention for Turin and making Turin, that would be a great achievement.”