Last year, the final wasn't as fans in Munich expected it to be, as the Dutch player was forced to retire only after seven games. This time, fans watching the tournament that is often called also the BMW Open, enjoyed full three sets as players delivered a show.
The favourite in the final was clear and it wasn't because of their previous meeting on the ATP Tour. Rune is establishing himself as a top player for the future and he's one of the contenders at every tournament he joins already now.
At the 2023 Munich Open, he was cruising comfortably without losing a set on his way to the final. However, the Dutch player had the same record, winning all six sets and even eliminating the second-seeded Taylor Fritz.
Therefore, it's not a surprise that the final match was a good one. Rune started better, breaking already in the first game and building a 2-0 lead. But Van de Zandschulp found quick response and after three more games, he was the player leading, this time 3-2.
But the young Dane didn't give up despite losing a one-break advantage. He used his next chance to break, which came in the seventh game, and after saving a break point on his next service game, he won the first set 6-4.
But the Dutch player fought back in the second set and he fought back in style. Botic Van de Zandschulp lost only two points on his serve and he allowed Rune to win only seven points on his own serve, as the fourth seed broke the teenager twice to win the second set 6-1 and force a decider.
Rune couldn't find the lost rhythm in the deciding set and he quickly faced a 0-2 deficit after being broken. The Dane had a chance to break back, but he couldn't use his break points and it went from bad to worse for him in the seventh game.
Van de Zanschulp broke again and at 5-2, he was serving for the match. The Dutch player even had two match points, but Rune produced a few sensational shots and got one of the breaks back.
Rune had another chance to break back in the tenth game of the third set and get back into the match, but after returning a ball to go into a 40-30 lead, he twisted his ankle.
A quick consultation with the doctor followed and the Dane could continue, but he was visibly hindered by the ankle and andgry about the fact that he picked up an unlucky injury while being so close to complete the comeback. However, he still managed to use his chances and break back to level the score at five games each in the decider.
The young Dane was unable to compete at his best but he still managed to fight for every point and take the third set into a tie-break. Fighting the ankle pain, Rune was able to beat Van de Zandschulp and win the match 6-4, 1-6, 7-6(3) to lift the 2023 Munich Open trophy and defend his title.