Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune Looks Ahead To Milan | ATP Tour

Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune begun the year No. 473 in the FedEx ATP Rankings. Now the Dane is placed at a career-high No. 109, after triumphing at five ATP Challenger Tour events in 2021.

In a standout season, the 18-year-old also reached tour-level quarter-finals in Santiago and Metz and won a set against World No. 1 Novak Djokovic in the first round at the US Open.

Rune, who captured his latest Challenger title Sunday, will compete at the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan this week and he spoke to ATPTour.com ahead of the 21-and-under event.

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A lot of the #NextGenATP players have been doing amazing things this year. How much does it motivate you, seeing the other young players doing well? Is there anyone in particular who has really impressed you?
[Carlos] Alcaraz has been doing extremely well this year. All of the guys have been doing well this year, but especially him. He did well at the US Open reaching the quarter-finals and played a good level of tennis. We are all here because we have had brilliant years and it will be interesting to see who takes the title because it is different playing players who are all similar ages.

When you were growing up there were Roger, Rafa and Novak, who created great rivalries. As you’re competing with other #NextGenATP players, have you thought about your budding rivalries and playing against them for many years?
I think rivalries are one of the most important things. When [Stefanos] Tsitsipas and [Daniil] Medvedev play, the guys who are almost the same, it is interesting to watch because it is another aspect in the match. Also when you watch Novak vs Rafa or Roger vs Rafa it is fun and I think I would like to make rivalries with some of the players here.

Have you watched the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals before and if so, what were your thoughts?
I watched it when I was very young with my mum. She bought tickets for Christmas, an early Christmas gift in 2017. I went to Milan to watch the first edition when Hyeon Chung won and [Andrey] Rublev played and Medvedev and it was fun because back then when I was watching Medvedev, I didn’t think he would get to World No. 2 and now he is almost No. 1.

I think it was really fun because there is an extra passion in it. It inspires you and makes you believe even more that you can make it. If you make the top eight at the under-21 event, you have a good chance to make it at the Nitto ATP Finals in the future.

The Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals always has many innovations. Were there any that you particularly enjoyed and look forward to using and if so, why?
I like the rule system. Especially the no-Ad scoring because you have to be brave and take your chances. Also for the crowd, when I watched it I thought it was super interesting and the adrenaline raises.

When you think of Italy, what do you think of?
The food! The pasta. I would have pasta bolognese, that is my favourite. I could eat it at lunch and dinner every single time. I had some last night.

Have you ever done some sight-seeing in Italy and if so what was your favourite place to visit?
I have been to Italy a lot of times. When I was younger, we used to go during the Christmas holidays to Milan. I know the place almost like home. I have been here tons of times, exploring different places. I have played a lot of Challengers this year in Italy. I played in Perugia, in the middle of nowhere and it was beautiful. There are so many great places here.

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