The top seed was imperious in completing a 6-3, 6-2 win over David Goffin on Wednesday to reach the second round at the ATP 500 event in Germany for the first time.
“It was a great match,” said Medvedev after his victory. “David is a tricky player. I think that’s why I went to play last week. It’s always an advantage when you played some matches and your opponent didn’t.
“[The] first set was really tight, like always on a grass court. I feel like he was missing his rhythm a little bit, I was trying to serve fast, it was not easy for him. I managed to keep this momentum until the end and that was enough today.”
Goffin had won the pair’s only previous tour-level meeting on grass, a five-set victory in the third round at Wimbledon in 2019, and the Belgian was by no means below-par in the first-round clash. Yet Medvedev found a consistently high level from the start on OWL Arena, giving the 2019 finalist few opportunities to counter in a 64-minute victory.
Medvedev appeared in control of a high-quality first set thanks to a break in the fourth game, but as he served for it at 5-3 Goffin’s clean-hitting carved out a break-back opportunity. The World No. 1’s ability to find big serves at important moments had defined his run to the final at the Libema Open in ‘s-Hertogenbosch last week, however, and his delivery was precise once again as he fended off the break point at 30/40 before going on to convert his second set point.
An all-around performance from Medvedev in the second set made it increasingly difficult for World No. 39 Goffin to stick with his opponent. Medvedev raced to a 4-0 lead, and although he again needed to find a big serve to fend off break point and hold for 5-1, the top seed was comfortable in serving out for victory having fired 17 winners, including six aces.
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Medvedev missed much of the 2022 European clay season due to a hernia procedure, and he acknowledged the break was a contributing factor to his bright start on the grass this year.
“The clay seems like a long season for me, especially I struggle mentally a lot on it, so I always feel like I am a little bit worn out after Roland Garros,” said Medvedev. “[This year] I just played two tournaments [on clay], and still Roland Garros, even though I played good there, it is tough for me to play on clay. So it’s not that easy, but definitely I am more fresh than [earlier] years.”
A second-round meeting with Ilya Ivashka now awaits Medvedev in north-west Germany, where the 26-year-old is chasing his maiden title of the 2022 season.