Novak Djokovic praises Daniil Medvedev: ‘I respect him tremendously’

Tennis – Medvedev served for the victory against Djokovic at the ATP Finals.

Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev met for the 12th time at the ATP Finals in Turin. The encounter carried no importance outside 200 ATP points, and two great rivals still gave their best to emerge at the top. Djokovic prevailed 6-3, 6-7, 7-6 in three hours and 11 minutes, erasing a late break in the decider and sealing the deal in the tie break.

Novak struggled physically since the second set, barely staying on his legs but refusing to surrender. The Serb raised his level in the opener’s second part to take it 6-3 after 46 minutes. The second set’s opening eight games saw more dynamic holds, and they stayed locked at 4-4.

Novak Djokovic prevailed over Daniil Medvedev in a thriller in Turin.

Medvedev saved a break point in game nine, and Djokovic fended off three set points in the next one despite an apparent struggle. They stayed neck and neck until 5-5 in the tie break before Medvedev grabbed the last two points to claim the set and force a decider after nearly two hours.

As in set number two, they both produced fine holds to level the score at 4-4. The ninth game saw a real roller coaster, with almost ten deuces and endless exchanges. Daniil grabbed a break after Novak’s wild forehand and served for the victory in game ten.

Making one last push, Novak broke back at 15 with a volley winner at the net to lock the result at 5-5 and prolong the battle. The set went into a tie break, and Novak gained a boost and clinched it 7-2 following a forehand down the line winner, delivering another thrilling victory en route to the title.

“I saw Daniil’s last duel. It must be tough for him to lose three matches in the deciding tie break, but it happens. Daniil is a great champion; I have tremendous respect for him. He barely missed a ball from the baseline since the second set’s closing stages and throughout the third.

I had to change things and shorten the points. He challenged me, and I’m delighted to overcome the obstacle and emerge at the top. Daniil served for the victory, and I read his serve well in that game. He made most of the first serves, but I read them well and produced good points.

He was tight, as it’s never easy to serve out for the win. When I broke back, I was in a better position to win the match,” Novak Djokovic said.

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