Aslan Karatsev is widely considered the breakthrough player of 2021 so far, having made the semifinals at the Australian Open as a qualifier and the finals at Dubai as a wildcard. In fact, the Russian's rise to stardom has been so sudden that he hasn't even had the time to build any brand recognition.
During the press conference after his win over World No. 8 Andrey Rublev at Dubai, Aslan Karatsev was asked whether he had inked any sponsorship deals after his campaigns in Melbourne and Dubai. The 27-year-old, who was ranked outside the top 100 just over a month ago, seemed enthused by the question as he jokingly asked the reporter whether he had found any lucrative deals for him.
"Did you find something for me, you're asking, or what?" Aslan Karatsev said tongue-in-cheek when asked if he had attracted any new sponsorship deals.
Karatsev confirmed he had not signed any new contracts, meaning that Adidas is currently the Russian's only sponsor for clothing and shoes. The Russian was not done with the question though, as he asked the reporter to be on the lookout for new deals for him.
"No, if you find something I'll be happy, Karatsev said. "But at the moment, as you can see, yeah."
"There's always a chance, depends on player mentally and physically" - Aslan Karatsev on his chances at Miami in the absence of Novak Djokovic & Co
Aslan Karatsev ended Andrey Rublev's 23-match winning streak at 500-level events with his semifinal win on Friday. Having accumulated a 14-2 W-L record across all competitive matches in 2021, Karatsev is currently one of the most in-form players on the tour right now.
During the post-match interview, the 27-year-old was also asked about the prospect of going deep at the Miami Masters in the absence of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Dominic Thiem. Karatsev replied that he was looking forward to playing the Masters 1000 tournament, and declared that he had a chance at Miami as long as he kept his body and temperament in check.
"I'm ready to play, so we will see next week if I'm ready to play in Miami. I entered and I'm looking forward to play," Karatsev said. "There's always a chance, depends on the player mentally, physically, I will play and we will see."