Thursday, September 29, 2022

US Open: Ruud aiming to emulate Haaland by putting Norway ´on the map´

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 10 Sep 2022

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Casper Ruud is looking to follow in the footsteps of compatriot Erling Haaland by putting Norway “on the map” ahead of his US Open final appearance.

Ruud is the first Norwegian male player to appear in the championship match at Flushing Meadows, where he will play Carlos Alcaraz on Sunday, with the winner also set to become the new world number one.

Runner-up to Rafael Nadal at the French Open in June, the fifth seed would become only the fourth player from Scandinavia to top the ATP rankings should he prevail at Arthur Ashe Stadium – after Bjorn Borg, Mats Wilander and Stefan Edberg.

Ruud is not the only Norwegian sportsman to be enjoying an impressive spell of form. Indeed, compatriot Haaland has made a blistering start to life at Manchester City.

The former Borussia Dortmund striker has already scored 12 goals in his first eight appearances across all competitions – including successive hat-tricks – since swapping Bundesliga for the Premier League.

Ruud hailed Haaland’s red-hot streak at City, and said he takes immense pride in representing the Norwegian flag every time he steps out onto the court.

The nine-time ATP title winner said: “Erling Haaland has had an unbelievable season so far. And we all hope he keeps going. It’s a joy to watch him score goal after goal.

“So, he’s obviously the biggest star we have in Norway at the moment, and he’ll probably continue to be so for many more years. 

“I’m just focused on my career and hope I can, of course, win more tournaments in my career.

“Everywhere I go, I represent Norway – whenever I play on the ATP Tour or in a grand slam, because the Norwegian flag is always behind or in front of my name.

“So, I want to represent Norway in a good way, and put Norwegian tennis a little bit more on the map than what it’s been in previous years.

“I hope I can represent Norway and the Norwegian people in a good way when I’m travelling around and playing, and hopefully winning more matches.”

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