Daniil Medvedev didn’t have things all his own way Sunday at the Erste Bank Open in Vienna, but he stepped up when needed, overcoming Denis Shapovalov 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 to capture his second tour-level title of the season.
The top seed was overpowered by Shapovalov in an entertaining first set, with the Canadian firing 21 winners to move ahead. However, the World No. 4 refused to go away throughout the two-hour, 16-minute clash, hitting with greater depth and accuracy in the second and third sets to force Shapovalov into errors at the ATP 500 event.
“I am really happy,” Medvedev said. “This match was the best of the week because Denis was really playing unreal until probably 4-3 in the second set. He dropped his level by maybe two per cent and I was able to use it. This is one of the best victories when you know your opponent is on top of you, but you try and stay there and do what you can.”
Medvedev now leads the 23-year-old Shapovalov 4-2 in their ATP Head2Head series, while he has improved to 45-15 on the season. Earlier this year, he reached the final at the Australian Open before he won the title in Los Cabos.
The 26-year-old looked back to his very best during a dominant week in Austria. He did not drop a set or lose serve en route to the championship match, securing his spot at the Nitto ATP Finals – to be held in Turin from 13-20 November – along the way.
In front of a packed crowd in the championship match, Medvedev produced moments of magic in the third set as he blunted the attack of Shapovalov with a range of stunning passing shots. The top seed hit 24 winners and broke serve five times, sealing the title on his sixth match point.
Medvedev, who reached the quarter-finals in his only previous appearance in Vienna, has now won 15 tour-level titles, with seven coming on indoor hard courts. The 2020 Nitto ATP Finals champion will now head to the Rolex Paris Masters, where he will aim to capture his second title at the ATP Masters 1000 event.
“I like to play indoor hard courts at the end of the season,” Medvedev said. “I feel that I do a great job with my team not to arrive burnt out. I am looking forward to the last two tournaments of the year which are really important and I usually play well.”
Shapovalov was competing in his second tour-level final of the month after advancing to that stage in Seoul. The Canadian, who is up to No. 16 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings, was unable to match Medvedev’s intensity in the third set as he looked to win his second tour-level crown and first since 2019, when he triumphed in Stockholm.