Alexander Shevchenko advanced to his first tour-level final on Friday at the Moselle Open, where he beat French wild card Pierre-Hugues Herbert 6-4, 6-4 to continue his dream week in Metz.

The 22-year-old defeated Karen Khachanov to reach his first ATP Tour semi-final and backed up that victory with a dominant display against Herbert to become the youngest Metz finalist since 22-year-old Lucas Pouille in 2016.

“It means a lot to me,” said Shevchenko, who broke Herbert’s serve three times and hit eight aces to advance after 77 minutes at the ATP 250 event. “I’ve dreamed of this moment since I was a kid. When I went to sleep I thought that maybe I could play in an ATP final and now I will. I will always remember this moment and it is something special.”

Shevchenko has risen 14 places to No. 49 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings and is set to reach a new personal best on Monday. Earlier this year, the 22-year-old was outside the Top-150. Since then he has only evolved. In recent weeks, he has achieved the quarterfinals of the ATP 500 in Basel and now the final in Metz.

On Saturday he will face fourth-seeded Frenchman Ugo Humbert in the title match. The local has just defeated the Italian Fabio Fognini 6-0, 6-2 to reach his fourth final at the circuit level and the first since Halle in 2021. The Frenchman will reach the Top 20 of the Pepperstone ATP Rankings for the first time if he wins the title in Metz. The last player from his country to rise to the Top 20 was Gael Monfils in August 2022.

However, being a finalist is already enough for next Monday to set a personal best in the ranking. At the beginning of this week he imposed one by appearing at No. 23. But with his participation in Metz he will be at least No. 22 from the next update of the rankings. The 25-year-old left-hander is seeking his fourth tour-level trophy this week. He triumphed in Auckland and Antwerp in 2020 and in Halle in 2021.

Source: https://www.atptour.com/es/news/metz-2023-friday

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