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Medvedev On Thiem: ‘He Played Like A Champion’

Medvedev On Thiem: ‘He Played Like A Champion’

Having played several ATP Head2Head matches against each of the Big Three, Daniil Medvedev is an authority in comparing their level to that of his peers. After falling to Dominic Thiem on Friday in the US Open semi-finals, he believes the Austrian has turned a corner in matching their day in, day-out consistency.

“He played like a real champion. That’s actually the stress of the Big Three. No matter which day you play them, it seems like they play the same level,” Medvedev said. “Talking about myself or Dominic, we can have these bad days where… Maybe you can say, ‘I’m going to play to the backhand of Dominic and get some chances.’ Well, not during this US Open or Australian Open. He’s playing really some great tennis. Backhand, forehand, slice, everything is there.”

Medvedev only won 15 fewer points than his opponent (112 to 127), but fell short in the most crucial points of the match. He had only been broken three times in his first five rounds and held the most dominant serving stats among the semi-finalists, but was unable to serve out the second and third sets against Thiem. He also failed to convert the set point he held in each of those sets.

Rather than rue those missed opportunities or his 44 unforced errors on the night, Medvedev felt the end result was due to Thiem’s play. He credited his opponent with maintaining a high level and applying constant pressure in their baseline exchanges.

“What I would do different in this semifinal? Probably not much,” Medvedev said. “We can talk about some shots, losing concentration in the first set. But Dominic played really good.

“Tennis is all about small points. Sometimes you win these points, sometimes you lose them. Today, I lost the most important points. That’s how he got the win. But I think it was really high-level tennis and Dominic was playing really good.”

Despite the loss, Medvedev will depart New York with confidence as he turns his focus to the clay-court swing. He entered this tournament having only won six of his past 10 matches and struggled for confidence, but finished by regaining the form from the second half of last year that saw him clinch his first two ATP Masters 1000 titles (Cincinnati & Shanghai), in addition to reaching his first Grand Slam final at the US Open.

”Definitely more happy than disappointed,” Medvedev said. “[If] two months ago, someone would tell me I’d make [the] semi-finals of the US Open, I would be super happy because I was not feeling great about my game [and] my physical shape. I had huge troubles in practice. I was like, ‘Okay, how am I going to play?’

”Finally, I showed a great level. Even talking about tonight, [I’m] super happy about my level. Disappointed with the loss, but great experience. Great result. Looking forward to the next tournaments.”

Published at Sat, 12 Sep 2020 04:38:00 +0000

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