Dialled-in defence and and a cool head at key moments have been the basis of Daniil Medvedev’s run at the ABN AMRO Open this week. Saturday’s semi-final clash against Grigor Dimitrov proved to be no exception.
The sixth seed delivered a comprehensive 6-1, 6-2 victory in 82 minutes against the Bulgarian to reach the final at the indoor hard-court tournament in Rotterdam for the first time. Medvedev was typically relentless from the baseline and converted six of 13 break points to reach his first tour-level championship match since he claimed the title in Vienna last October.
A match featuring several marathon exchanges threatened to become more complicated for Medvedev when Dimitrov recovered from 0-2 in the second set to earn three break points at 2-2, 0/40. The World No. 11 shut any potential comeback down in style, however, dropping just four more points in the match en route to increasing his ATP Head2Head series lead against Dimitrov to 5-2.
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“It was an amazing match,” said Medvedev afterwards. “The score [looks] easy, but the match was not. I felt physically like I was playing five sets. [There were] some amazing rallies. It was 2-2, 0/40 for him in the second [set], so [I am happy] to manage to win it 6-2, just raise my level a little bit on serve and manage to keep consistent… He made a few more errors than he needed to make, and I’m happy with my level.”
The win lifted Medvedev one spot to No. 10 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings. He could rise one place further to No. 9 with victory in his 28th tour-level championship match on Sunday against Jannik Sinner or home wild card Tallon Griekspoor.
“It would be amazing [to win here],” said the former World No. 1 and 15-time tour-level titlist. “Every time I come here, and I think it is my fifth time here, everywhere there are photos of the winners and their names.
“I don’t remember who won it first time, but then Arthur Ashe won it [twice]. Then [others including] McEnroe, Borg, Edberg, and I’m like ‘Well, that tournament has a history for sure’. To add my name there would be amazing, but for this I need to play well in the final.”