A change of physiotherapist has been working wonders for Casper Ruud so far in the 2024 Australian Open after the world No.11 advanced to the fourth round on Friday.
The 25-year-old Norwegian credited the arrival of Alex Strober as his new physiotherapist with bringing a new spring to his game. The two-time grand slam finalist posted a 6-3, 6-7(5-7), 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(10-7), win over Max Purcell to keep his grand slam major hopes alive.
“He’s (Strober) been on the tour for many years, and he’s been helping me also with my body, I’m feeling good. I think it’s paid off so far this year,” Ruud said of his new physio, who made him lose five kilos in the lead-up to Melbourne.
The former world No.2 noted an extra step in his game. Ruud’s playing weight went down to 79 kilos after he blew out to 84 kilos last year.
“I feel smoother around the court and moving better, and I also feel like that helps me play well,” Ruud added.
Against Purcell, Ruud needed to save 11 straight breakpoints after the fourth set. A consistent first serve on each point did the trick for Ruud to frustrate Purcell before a sizable crowd.