"My dream is not to be movie star obviously. It's to be the best tennis player," says Holger Rune.
By Richard Pagliaro | Tuesday, January 17, 2023

All the world's a stage and Holger Rune is excited expanding his star-rising role.

Nineteen-year-old Rune swept Serbia's Filip Krajinovic 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 to score his first career Australian Open win.

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An assertive Rune broke serve seven times raising his Grand Slam record to 6-5.

"I think I played very aggressive. You know, that's what I'm working on with the team," Rune told the media in Melbourne. "We did a lot in the offseason to keep trying to come to the net and stuff, and I think it suits my game well, and I like to play that way."

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The two-hour, three-minute triumph came on the same day Serbian superstar Novak Djokovic made a triumphant return to Melbourne Park with a 6-3, 6-4, 6-0 dismissal of Roberto Carballes Baena to land in the AO second round for the 16th time.

Last fall, Rune stunned Djokovic to capture the Rolex Paris Masters championships.

Despite dramatically different conditions in the searing Australian heat, Rune says his Paris run fuels his Melbourne confidence.

"It's different, but obviously Paris gave me a lot of confidence, knowing that I could, you know, beat these top guys at one of the best tournaments we have in the world," Rune said. "I feel good. I feel like I have a lot of confidence."

It's not a stretch to imagine a Rune run down under. If seeds hold true to form, the ninth-seeded Rune would face fifth-seeded Andrey Rublev in the fourth round with the winner potentially playing nine-time champion Djokovic in the quarterfinals.

Players know how dangerous Rune is and now producers are taking notice.

Rune revealed he's a big fan of the Netflix series Break Point and is now a participant in the show with a camera crew in tow for his Melbourne match.

"We are already starting to do it. They are filming a little bit," Rune said. "I think the plan is to do some filming for my next match as well.

"I'm excited to do it. I think it's going to be great. It's good for tennis. It's good for us players. And I think more fans we can get into the sport, it's better. I'm just very positive about it."

Life as a budding Netflix star hasn't caused Rune to lose sight of the plot: win a Grand Slam and compete for world No. 1.

"My dream is not to be movie star obviously. It's to be the best tennis player," Rune said. 

In an ideal world, perhaps Rune can succeed in both roles someday: Grand Slam champion and compelling character in tennis growth.

Photo credit: Getty