There was just one milestone that had eluded Ruud since making his Roland-Garros debut in 2018: he had not been past the third round in four appearances, falling to quality opponents like Roger Federer and Dominic Thiem. And despite a fourth-round appearance at the Australian Open last year, he had never been to the last eight at a Slam.
The quarter-finals were a mountain even his father and coach, former ATP pro Christian Ruud, couldn’t conquer, also reaching the third round at Roland-Garros in 1995 and 1999.
But across two weeks in Paris, everything finally came together for the younger Ruud.
After becoming the first Norwegian player to reach the fourth round with a battling 6-2, 6-7(3), 1-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over Lorenzo Sonego, Ruud outgunned No.12 seed Hubert Hurkacz 6-2, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 to mark some personal history of his own.
“It is gonna change, of course, a little bit the way I think I look [at] the Grand Slams in the future when you know you have reached a quarter-final one time,” Ruud said ahead of his upcoming quarter-final against Danish teenager Holger Rune.
“It has been a big goal for me this year, and to reach it is a good feeling.