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Madrid Masters: Medvedev comes from behind to beat qualifier Shevchenko, makes last 16

Daniil Medvedev edged out Alexander Shevchenko 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 on Monday and will play the winner of the match between Australian Alex De Minaur, the No 16 seed, and Russian qualifier Aslan Karatsev in the next round

Daniil Medvedev Tennis – Madrid Open – Park Manzanares, Madrid, Spain – May 1, 2023 Russia’s Daniil Medvedev reacts after losing the first set during his round of 32 match against Russia’s Alexander Shevchenko (AI/Reuters/Panoramic)
Mutua Madrid Open •Third round • completed
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Second seed Daniil Medvedev was close to leave the Madrid Masters 1000 but he finally prevailed in the opening match, on Monday. The Russian reached the last 16 by edging out qualifier Alexander Shevchenko 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 at the Caja Magica on Monday after a 2h42battle.

It was the first time Shevchenko had faced a player ranked in the top 10, but had already posted back-to-back wins over two in the top 50 en route to the third round against American J.J. Wolf (6-4, 6-4) and Czech Jiri Lehecka, the No 31 seed (6-1, 6-1).

And after he took the first set it looked like he was about to continue a great run in Madrid – before the world No 3 came back to secure his 300th ATP tour match win.

Shevchenko twice led by a break in the third, and must have thought the end was in sight when he moved ahead 4-2, 30-15 on his own serve. A combination of Medvedev’s tenacity and Shevchenko’s own body failing him with cramps handed the match to the former world No 1.

“He played good,” Medvedev said of his opponent. “I mean, I know that he plays probably also better on clay, but I think he can play very well on hard courts. I play a little bit worse on clay, so that’s why the match was very tight. He had all the opportunities to win it.

“Since it’s clay, I feel like — if on hard courts you have two times the break up in the third, you should be disappointed. On clay it’s like, well, whatever, the serve doesn’t count as much, so we just continue playing and that’s what I did.

“Crazy match, really exhausted in the end. Happy that I managed to find the way to win it.”

Medvedev: The crowd started booing me for challenging

Medvedev also had some words for the crowd, who were getting on his back, particularly at the end of the first set.

“I hit the racquet a little bit after the first set. I was disappointed with some mistakes. So they started booing. I was, like, yeah, come on, let’s do it more.”

He added: “One time I took a challenge, they started booing. What, you don’t want me to take a challenge?”

Medvedev, ranked No 3, will play Russian qualifier Aslan Karatsev next. Ahead of his victory, he won against Italian qualifier Andrea Vavassori (6-4, 6-3) after skipping the Barcelona tournament, ten days after his quarter-finals at Monte-Carlo.

Madrid Masters, other third-round results (Caja Magica, clay, EUR 7.705.780, most recent results first):

  • Sebastian Baez vs. Stefanos Tsitsipas : Monday in Madrid
  • Zhizhen Zhang vs. Cameron Norrie: Monday in Madrid
  • Taylor Fritz vs. Cristian Garin: Monday in Madrid
  • Roman Safiullin vs. Bernabe Zapata Miralles: Monday in Madrid
  • Aslan Karatsev (Q) beat Alex De Minaur (16): 6-3, 4-6, 6-4
  • Jan-Lennard Struff beat Dusan Lajovic: 6-7 (2), 6-3, 6-3
  • Daniil Medvedev (2) beat Alexander Shevchenko (Q): 4-6, 6-1, 7-5
  • Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (29) beat Holger Rune (6): 7-6 (1), 5-7, 7-6 (5)
  • Daniel Altmaier (LL) beat Yannick Hanfmann (Q): 7-6 (3), 6-3
  • Carlos Alcaraz (1) beat Grigor Dimitrov (26): 6-2, 7-5
  • Borna Coric (17) beat Hubert Hurkacz (12): 7-6 (3), 6-3
  • Alexander Zverev (13) beat Hugo Grenier (Q): 6-1, 6-0
  • Andrey Rublev (5) beat Yoshihito Nishioka (28): 6-2, 7-5
  • Jaume Munar beat Matteo Arnaldi (Q): 3-6, 6-3, 6-1
  • Karen Khachanov (10) beat Roberto Bautista Agut (20): 7-5, 4-6, 6-3

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