The 24-year-old implemented his dynamic game on Zverev from the start as he combined brutal ball striking with deft touches to capture the first Top 5 win of his career after 70 minutes in Montpellier.
“I had four finals and the fifth final I have won against a great player against Sascha,” Bublik said. “It is great. All my game together. I was serving well and returned well and kept my nerve. I was lucky in the moments and when I had my chances I used them.”
The Kazakhstani, who was competing in his fifth tour-level final, fired eight aces and won 86 per cent (25/29) of his first-serve points to improve his ATP Head2Head series record against Zverev to 2-0. Bublik also defeated the German in Rotterdam last season.
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With his victory, the World No. 35 will rise to a career-high in the ATP Rankings on Monday. In a dream week in Montpellier, Bublik also earned wins over Tallon Griekspoor, Pierre-Hugues Herbert, Roberto Bautista Agut and Filip Krajinovic.
In a standout 2021 season, Bublik earned a personal-best 35 victories on Tour, reaching finals in Antalya and Singapore. He has continued to build on his strong year, moving to 7-2 on the 2022 campaign.
Zverev was aiming to win his 20th tour-level title at the ATP 250 event. The top-seeded German lifted the trophy in Montpellier in his last appearance at the tournament in 2017.