Russia’s Daniil Medvedev has said he is working to be a ‘better person’ as he seeks to end his bad boy image with the fans at the US Open.
The fifth seed made headlines during his third round clash after seemingly trolling the crowd following his win. He was subjected to heckling during the match after being seen snatching a towel from the hands of a ball boy before throwing it away. He was also shown on the stadium screen as putting his middle finger up to either the umpire or crowd.
“Talking about the last match, I was an idiot, to be honest.” Medvedev said on Sunday. “I did some things that I’m not proud of and that I’m working on to be a better person on the court because I do think I’m a good person out of the court.”
The antics didn’t go unpunished with Medvedev being fined $9000. $5000 for unsportsmanlike conduct and $4000 for his finger gesture. Earlier in the tournament, he was also docked $7500 in the first round for verbal abuse and $2500 in the second for equipment abuse.
23-year-old Medvedev hoped that his latest match helped ease his frosty relationships with fans at Flushing Meadows. In the fourth round, he dismissed German qualifier Dominik Koepfer 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 7-6(2). Sending him through to the quarter-finals of a grand slam for the first time in his career.
“During my match I was completely focused. After the match, I engaged a little bit with the crowd. But we all know how the New York crowd can be. It’s probably the most electric crowd in the world, I think.” He said.
“Especially playing this week on big courts, I could feel it. Today I was just engaging with the crowd and hopefully — hopefully it was fun for them and for me. As I said, it gave me a lot of energy to win.”
There are concerns over how the body of the world No.5 is holding up. Coming into the major, he had featured in three ATP finals within as many weeks. Winning the Cincinnati Masters. Medvedev took pain killers prior to his clash with Koepfer and has numerous parts of his body taped up.
“My abductors were tight, so that’s why I had the tape on the adductor. My shoulder was quite painful at the end of the match with (Feliciano) Lopez. That’s why I had the tape on the shoulder.” He explained.
Three-time grand slam champion Stan Wawrinka will be the next test for Medvedev. This Swiss player moved into the last eight after Novak Djokovic retired two sets down due to a shoulder injury. It is the second time he has reached the quarter-finals of a grand slam this season after the French Open. The only previous meeting between the two was back in 2017 at Wimbledon, where Wawrinka prevailed in four sets.
“Totally different. Grass, I was young, I was less experienced, so I was on fire that match.” Medvedev commented on that loss.
“I think that Stan also in Grand Slams, he’s playing right now better than on other tournaments.”
Medvedev is bidding to become only the second Russian man to reach a US Open final after Marat Safin in 2000.
Injured Rafael Nadal Ousts Fritz In Wimbledon Thriller
The world No.4 is through to the semi-finals but there are new doubts over his current health.
Rafael Nadal has kept his chances of achieving a calendar slam alive by defeating American Taylor Fritz in a dramatic quarter-final match at Wimbledon where he struggled with injury.
The second seed took a medical time out during the second set but continued to battle to a sensational 3-6, 7-5, 3-6, 7-5, 7-6(10-4), win over Fritz. Two days ago Nadal was seen wearing tape on his abdomen but refused to go into details when asked by reporters. Although it was clear that this issue is ongoing with the Spaniard crouching over a couple of times after serving in pain.
“The body is generally fine. Of course, in the abdominal area, something is not going well. I had to find a way to serve a little bit differently,” said Nadal. “I was thinking during a lot of moments that I would not be able to finish the match but the energy (of Center Court) was something else.”
In the roller-coaster encounter, 19 breaks of serves occurred throughout the marathon match. During the gut-busting 260-minute showdown Nadal saw plenty of chances come and go. In each of the first two sets, he had a break advantage before losing them. He also failed to maintain a break advantage in the decider before coming through in the tiebreak. Nevertheless, he managed to come out on top with the help of 5 aces and 55 winners.
“I enjoy playing these kinds of matches in front of you guys (the crowd),” the Spaniard continued.
“It has been a tough afternoon against a great player. All the credit to Taylor, he has been playing great the whole season.’
“From my side, it was not an easy match and I am happy to be in the semifinal.”
The triumph is a bitter pill for Fritz to swallow who was bidding to become the youngest American man to reach the last four at Wimbledon since 2005. Until now he had been on an eight-match winning streak.
As for Nadal, he is through to his eighth Wimbledon semi-final and 38th at a major event. He is now 8-0 when it comes to playing quarter-final matches at the tournament.
Amid concerns over the abdomen, Nadal now has only two days to recover in time for his blockbuster showdown against the formidable Nick Kyrgios who came through his match in straight sets against Cristian Garin. Nadal leads their head-to-head 6-3 and has won their two previous meetings at SW19.
“I hope to be ready to play it,” he said of the semi-final.
“TNick is a great player on all surfaces, especially on the grass. He’s having a great grass-court season and it’s going to be a great challenge. I need to be one hundred percent.”
At the age of 36 Nadal is seeking to reach his first Wimbledon final since 2011.
“I Thought The Ship Had Sailed’ – Nick Kyrgios Reaches Maiden Wimbledon Semis
The 27-year-old reacts to achieving a new milestone in his career.
Nick Kyrgios has achieved his best-ever result at a Grand Slam tournament after beating Cristian Garin in straight sets in the quarter-finals at Wimbledon.
Kyrgios, who was playing in the last eight of the tournament for the first time since 2014, rallied to a 6-4, 6-3, 7-5(5) win over his Chilean rival. Becoming the first player from his country to reach the last four of the men’s draw since Lleyton Hewitt did so back in 2005.
”I felt I was playing on the back foot a lot. He’s a hell of a player,” Kyrgios said afterward. “He’s obviously very confident. Hell of a tournament for him to make the quarter-finals. I got lucky on a couple of break points here and there. It could have been him standing here (giving the winner’s interview).”
In what was a largely controlled match from Kyrgios, he produced a total of 17 aces alongside 35 winners against 29 unforced errors. There were the occasional outbursts and criticism of the lines officials but it was by nowhere as controversial as his previous encounters against Stefanos Tsitspas in the third round and Paul Jubb in the first.
The breakthrough comes during what has been a turbulent career. Kyrgios has been a player involved in many controversies and was at one stage issued with a suspended ban from the Tour due to unsportsmanlike conduct. However, his talent was never doubted but many were unsure if he could be consistent enough to have a deep run at a major event. He once was at a pub until 4 am on the same day he was due to play Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon.
“It was an amazing atmosphere out here (on court one). I never thought I will be in the semifinal of a grand slam. I thought my ship had sailed.” He admits.
“I didn’t go about things earlier in my career great and I may have wasted (time).’
‘I’m really proud of the way I’ve come back out here with my team and with that performance.”
As one of the few top 100 players who travel without a coach, Kyrgios paid tribute to those around him.
“I don’t have a coach I would never put that burden on someone,” he jokes.
“Each and every one of my team plays an important role. I feel like nobody knows my tennis better than I do. I’ve been playing this sport since I was seven and to be in the semi-final of a slam I am pretty happy.”
Kyrgios is the lowest-ranked Wimbledon semi-finalist since 2008.
Why Cameron Norrie’s Historic Run To The Wimbledon Semi-Finals Is No Fluke
The Brit has already proved his worth on the ATP Tour, it was only a matter of time before he did so at the majors.
Cameron Norrie joins a small contingent of British men to have ever reached the semi-final of a major after coming through a dramatic five-set epic against David Goffin at Wimbledon.
Spurred on by an animated crowd, the ninth seed battled from behind to win 3-6, 7-5, 2-6, 6-3, 7-5, against the former top 10 player. In doing so the 26-year-old has become only the fourth British man in the Open Era to reach the last four of the grass-court major and the seventh to do so at any Grand Slam.
“To just be a semifinalist of a slam, especially this one, living just around the corner. It’s just all pretty crazy and all happened pretty quickly.” Said Norrie.
A former college standout player for Texas Christian University, Norrie’s Grand Slam breakthrough has been one in the making. Last year he achieved his best-ever season with a win-loss record of 52-25. During that year he contested six tour finals across three different surfaces, winning two titles. The most prestigious being Indian Wells. His coach, Facundo Lugones, was recognized for his work by being named ATP Coach of the Year.
Norrie’s 2021 wasn’t a one-off with him continuing his form into this year. Winning the Delray Beach Open in February and Lyon in May. More recently, he was runner-up at Queen’s to Matteo Berrettini who is absent from the tournament after testing positive for COVID-19
“When I was a kid watching guys on TV making the (Grand Slam) quarterfinals and thinking, ‘Wow, this looks so tough to do, and there’s almost zero chance I’m going to do that.’ But to actually be doing it, to be living it and experiencing it is very cool and pretty crazy.”
Until now the Grand Slams have been where Norrie has failed to shine. It was visible how much the latest Wimbledon win meant to the world No.12 who struggled to hold back his emotions whilst speaking during his on-court interview.
“All the hard work, the sacrifices and everything just kind of all hit me at once. Especially the situation here at Wimbledon in front of my family, my friends, and obviously a lot of people following that match.” Norrie explained.
“Thinking back about all the hard work, the sacrifices and everything was just…. I didn’t really know what to say. It got emotional there. (It was) just a crazy day and crazy match to get through.”
Standing in his way of becoming the first home player since Andy Murray to reach the Wimbledon final is Novak Djokovic. The top seed ousted Jannik Sinner in five sets earlier in the day.
“He has nothing to lose. Every victory from now onwards is a big deal for him. I know that.” Said Djokovic.
“But I practiced (with him) a few times. I know his game well. He’s been around. Of course, I will do my homework and get ready.”
Looking ahead to his showdown with the 20-time Grand Slam champion, Norrie describes playing him as one of the ‘toughest’ tasks in the sport. He first played Djokovic at last year’s ATP Finals in Milan where he lost 6-2, 6-1. Although the Brit believes he has learned a lot from that match and will be seeking tips from a former Wimbledon Champion as well.
“Andy (Murray) has been super supportive to me and my team. I’m always practicing with him and always reaching out to him for ideas. He’s super supportive with us,” he said.
“I think he’s not a bad guy to ask about some tactics. I’m going to enjoy today and maybe reach out to him and see what he’s got.”
Norrie’s win-loss record against top 10 players in his career currently stands at 4-23.
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