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Medvedev Downs Supreme Entertainer Kyrgios in Melbourne

Australian Open

January 20, 2022

Daniil Medvedev looks favourite for the Aussie Open after he defeated Nick Kyrgios 7-6 (7-1), 6-4. 4-6, 6-2 in Melbourne.

Alexander Zverev and the great Rafael Nadal may yet have something to say about who lifts the trophy, of course.

But Medvedev appears very hard to beat after taking on both Kyrgios and the crowd Down Under.

The fact that Daniil still came out on top tells us everything about the strength of his character.

But the Russian was still fuming at the end of a highly entertaining match, played out in an electric atmosphere.

Kyrgios was full of his usual tricks, including a brilliant ‘tweener’ on the way to clinching the third set.

That’s why we’ll love seeing Kyrgios at Wimbledon 2022!

But Daniil’s returning was simply out of this world when it mattered.

And Kyrgios started the final game at 0-15 after smashing his racquet in frustration.

Medvedev was determined to win and prove a point after he felt he was unfairly treated by the crowd.

He explained his emotions afterwards. ‘It’s not anger, it’s just a little bit of disappointment. I faced a break point on second serve and people were cheering like [the break’s] already happened.

‘That’s disappointing and the people who are doing it probably have a low IQ.

‘I came to win this match and I’m happy that I managed to do it.

‘That’s the only choice when you get booed between first and second serves. It’s not easy, so I just had to stay calm and win the match.’

Even in the on-court interview with American legend Jim Courier after the match, Medvedev clashed with the crowd.

‘Let him speak,’ Medvedev implored spectators. ‘If you respect somebody, at least respect Jim Courier. He won here.’

Courier tried to tell the Russian that the Australian crowd were mimicking a Cristiano Ronaldo soccer celebration rather than jeering him.

Medvedev pointed out that the effect was just the same when you are trying to focus.

‘Whatever they say between serves, it just makes it tough to play,’ he insisted.

You can generally expect a more orderly audience on Wimbledon’s Centre Court, of course.

Indeed the respect shown to players is one of the many things that makes Wimbledon so special.

At the same time, different Grand Slam events present different challenges for players. And they must be ready to strut their stuff in any kind of atmosphere if they want to prevail.

Daniil maintained his composure admirably. And if one technical element of Medvedev’s game won him the match, it was his lightning return of serve.

He acknowledged: ‘We both serve big so you just try to return at least.

‘Especially in the second and fourth sets, I managed to return a bit more – a few crucial moments.’

At the end of his post-match observations, Medvedev was still able to reflect upon the beauty of big-time tennis and the spectacle it provides.

He said: ‘You have tough opponents, anything can happen, that’s why we have sensations. I’m just going to try my best and hopefully this will be enough to do something big.’

Medvedev pretty much summed up the excitement we can expect at Wimbledon 2022 right there!

And there are always so many unforeseen twists and turns in Grand Slam tennis tournaments.

Unfortunately for British tennis fans, it wasn’t quite their day in Melbourne.

Much-loved Brits Andy Murray and Emma Raducanu both fell on the same evening of the Australian Open.

Murray looked drained against the fizz and vigour of Japanese qualifier Taro Daniel.

Nevertheless the Scot had his chances to break and extend the match.

He couldn’t take them on what became a strangely careless contest for the two-time Wimbledon champion.

Daniel maintained momentum to win 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 and it looked as though Murray’s first-round heroics and that long run to the Sydney final had taken their toll.

There was similar heartbreak for Emma Raducanu, who battled all the way to the bitter end, despite painful blisters on her right hand.

She might even have won. She looked set to break and go 2-1 up in the decider against Danka Kovinic.

But the outsider from Montenegro held her nerve to triumph 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.

Raducanu is still on her way back after playing very little tennis in recent weeks. Meanwhile Murray is gaining more fitness and strength with every run of matches he has.

Emma Raducanu and Andy Murray will still be ready to go deep at Wimbledon 2022.

There are no worries on that score. And what an occasion Wimbledon promises to be!

But first the Brits can still cheer on Dan Evans at the Aussie Open.

And there will be so many more thrills and spills to enjoy in the next ten days!

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