Novak Djokovic outclasses Daniil Medvedev to take Serbia into ATP Cup final
Jan 13 2020
Novak Djokovic led Serbia into the other semi-final, where they will face Russian Federation, after edging past Canada's Denis Shapovalov 4-6 6-1 7-6 (7-4).
The Backcourt Slug Festival continued and it was one of the points in Djokovic's game before Medvedev finally took the break. The heralds blasted as well as the flags swung prior to the WorldNo 2 offered the laid out to like behind 4 successive aces, taking the opener 6-2.
But Nadal will likely first need to reverse the momentum in his long rivalry with Djokovic, who has not lost to the Spaniard on hardcourts, like the court surface in Sydney, since 2013.
The first singles match saw Dusan Lajovic beat Karen Khachanov, 7-5, 7-6 (1), setting up the world No. 2 Novak Djokovic to carry his team through to the finals. "It was a lot of rallies and it was very exhausting".
The Spaniard was heavily favoured to win the match and secure Spain a berth in the semi-finals after Roberto Bautista Agut eased past Kimmer Coppejans 6-1, 6-4 in the first singles match. The seven-time Australian Open champion saved three break points while serving for the match, including one with some genuine desperation - lunging to reach a volley, scrambling to get to a drop shot and then coming up with a makeshift forehand as he stretched back.
A lethargic world No 1 Rafael Nadal suffered a stunning upset at the ATP Cup on Friday, crashing in two tough sets to Belgium's David Goffin. Three of those matches came a year ago, Djokovic winning at the Australian Open, but Medvedev claiming victory at the Masters events in Monte Carlo and Cincinnati.
"[It was] definitely one of the most exciting matches I have played against him or any other top player in the last few years".
Serbia now gets Spain who edged Australia 3-0.
De Minaur had Nadal well and truly rattled early on, winning the first set, but ultimately he ran out of gas in a three-set thriller.
And, at 5-4 and 30-0 on his own serve, he seemed to have the match in control when play was interrupted when a spectator became ill.
The Serbian superstar was made to work by the 14th-ranked young gun before prevailing 4-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7/4) to help his team to a 3-0 win. "This is a team competition", Nadal said, referring to the best-of-three match format, adding that Spain has always put the team above the individual.
All in all, then, this first ATP tournament of 2020 has served up perhaps the ideal start to a new decade of men's tennis.
"Anyways, for me to play the match, I've got to play a very aggressive game".
In the first playing of this new team tournament, home nation Australia had done its country proud during a period of great distress across the nation. But Roberto played an wonderful match this afternoon and we have a good team, so we are ready for it.
Djokovic leads Nadal 28-26 in their head-to-head which dates back to 2006.
"I know I've got this level".
Doubles selection will likely come down to how the tie plays out, perhaps the ultimate result seeing the singles split so Nadal and Djokovic face off one more time for the road in Sydney.