After two semi-finals in 2019 and 2021, Frenchman Ugo Humbert finally managed to reach the final of the ATP 250 tournament in Marseille by beating Polish Hubert Hurkacz on Saturday for the first time in his career (6-4, 6-4) , seeded N.1 of this Open 13.
Humbert, 21st player in the world and who will join the Top 20 on Monday, has already won four titles in his career. He will face the winner of the duel between Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov and Russian Karen Khachanov in the final on Sunday. “Mentally it wasn't easy because I had already lost three times against him. But I was very solid at the start and making the entry break did me good,” explained Humbert after the match.
The last of Humbert's three losses against Hurkacz dates back to the last Australian Open, where the Frenchman failed to read the serve of the world No.8. But on Saturday, the Frenchman found the key to entry, with a thunderous first game of the return and a break kept until the end of the first round (6-4). In the second set, Humbert then took the service of the Polish title holder at 3-2. Offensive and inspired against a fairly annoyed opponent, the 25-year-old Messin was then threatened at 4-3 with several break points against him. But he held on before concluding with authority.
“That game was a key moment, I had to push a little more, be a little more aggressive. I was a little tense but that’s normal,” explained Humbert. “I’m super happy with my match. Hubert is one of the best servers and it is not easy to play against him,” he added. Sunday, Humbert, who is self-managed in Marseille in the absence of his coach Jérémy Chardy, will try to confirm his success in the final: he played four on the main circuit and won them all.