- 19 Feb 2021
Daniil Medvedev believes he has “nothing to lose” in Sunday’s Australian Open final against Novak Djokovic.
Medvedev reached his second grand slam decider after an impressive 6-4 6-2 7-5 victory over Stefanos Tsitsipas in their last-four clash in Melbourne on Friday.
The Russian fourth seed became the 25th man in the Open Era to record a Tour-level winning streak of 20 as he continued his incredible form.
Medvedev said in an on-court interview all the pressure in the final would be on Djokovic, who has won the Australian Open a record eight times.
Despite seeking his maiden grand slam crown, the 25-year-old – who has won three of his past four meetings with Djokovic – said he had nothing to lose in the final.
“I think he’s the favourite because he didn’t lose. In eight occasions that he was here in the semis he won the tournament. Me, I’m, how you can call it, I don’t know how you call it in English, not an outsider, but I’m the challenger, the guy that challenges the guy who was eight times in the final and won eight times. And I’m happy about it,” Medvedev told a news conference.
“I like to play against Novak. We have, since the first one when I was ranked 60, we had always tough matches physically, mentally. And he’s one of the greatest tennis players in the history of tennis. So playing the final against him is superb. I’m really happy about it. Let’s see what happens on Sunday.
“When I say no pressure, for sure when we get out there we both feel pressure. I want to win my first one. He wants to win number 18. We don’t know for who the crowd is going to be. It’s all the small details.
“I think if we talk in general, well, I have nothing to lose, to be honest.”
“I played one Grand Slam final already, for sure was tight in many moments there…experience is the key.”@DaniilMedwed plans to lean on lessons learned from the 2019 #USOpen to help him in the big moments on Sunday #AusOpen | #AO2021 pic.twitter.com/besDFhuTAX
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) February 19, 2021
Medvedev hit 46 winners and 21 unforced errors against Tsitsipas, overcoming a third-set blip to close out his victory.
As the Rod Laver Arena crowd attempted to get Tsitsipas back into the contest, Medvedev claimed a key break in the 11th game of the third set with a tremendous backhand pass down the line, which he celebrated with a dance.
“They [the crowd] were mostly for him, and that was, you know, the moment that I won the match, we should say. Of course you have to serve after, but that was important moment. So I wanted them to recognise me, I would say, because the shot was unbelievable, I think one of my best shots in my career,” Medvedev said.
“Actually, my legs were facing the other way of the court because I didn’t have time, so I have no idea how I made this, and I was really happy about it.”