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Medvedev begins bid for world No 1 with straight sets win in Acapulco

Medvedev took a step in the right direction in his bid for the world No 1 spot with a straight sets win over Benoit Paire

Russia's Daniil Medvedev reacts during his match against France's Benoit Paire at the Abierto Mexicano Open Russia’s Daniil Medvedev reacts during his match against France’s Benoit Paire at the Abierto Mexicano Open Image Credit: AI / Reuters / Panoramic

ATP 500 Acapulco Results | Schedule

US Open champion Daniil Medvedev began his bid to become world No 1 for the first time in his career with a straight sets win over Frenchman Benoit Paire at the Abierto Mexicano Telcel Open in Acapulco, Mexico on Tuesday evening.

Medvedev, who finished runner-up to Rafael Nadal at the Australian Open last month, needed one hour and 42 minutes to beat Paire and advance to the second round of the ATP 500 event.

Medvedev comes from a break down in the second to win in straight sets

The 25-year-old Russian broke Paire twice in the first set to win 6-3 and take a one-set lead. In the second set, it was the Frenchman who broke first to go ahead 4-2. However, the Russian bounced back to win the last four games in a row and complete the 6-3, 6-4 win and reach the last 16 in Acapulco.

Medvedev will meet either Spain’s Pablo Andujar or Mexican wild card Alex Hernandez for a spot in the quarter-finals.

How the Russian can become World No 1 next week

Medvedev has a chance to overtake Novak Djokovic, who is competing at the Dubai Tennis Championships this week, and become the 28th man to become world No 1 in tennis history next week based on how both players fare in their respective events this week.

With the Serb also through to the second round in Dubai, here are the scenarios in which Medvedev can end the 361-week reign of Djokovic at the top of the ATP rankings, as per the ATP tour.

  • Medvedev reaches the second round in Acapulco and Djokovic does not reach the semifinals in Dubai
  • Medvedev reaches the quarterfinals in Acapulco and Djokovic does not reach the semifinals in Dubai
  • The Russian reaches the semifinals in Acapulco and Djokovic does not reach the final in Dubai
  • Medvedev reaches the final in Acapulco and Djokovic does not win the Dubai title
  • The Russian wins the title in Acapulco, irrespective of Djokovic’s results in Dubai

Medvedev will face a tough battle to win the title in Acapulco with five of the top 6 players in the world, barring Djokovic, in the field this week. Nadal and Zverev are also through to the second round while fifth seed Matteo Berrettini was forced to withdraw during the second set of his first round match against Tommy Paul due to injury.

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