Tennis
Daniil Medvedev defeats Alcaraz to set up US Open Final clash with Novak Djokovic

Daniil Medvedev defeats Alcaraz to set up US Open Final clash with Novak Djokovic

Ahead of the semifinal, Medvedev had claimed that he would have to play 11 out of 10 to beat a player like Alcaraz. After winning, the Russian claimed that he played 12 out of 10 in the match to reach the US Open final.

In what could be considered an upset, third seed and former champion Daniil Medvedev beat world number one Carlos Alcaraz to enter the US Open Final for a third time. The Russain beat the Spaniard 7-6(3), 6-1, 3-6, and 6-3 under the roof at the Arthur Ashe Stadium in the second semifinal. Medvedev will now face 3-time champ Novak Djokovic on Sunday with the hope of winning his second US Open and Grand Slam title.

“I said I needed to play 11 out of 10, I played 12 out of 10 – except the third set, that’s the only way,” Medvedev said in on-court remarks. “To beat him you need to be better than yourself and I managed to do it.”

Medvedev’s upset denied tennis fans the Alcaraz vs. Novak Djokovic blockbuster finish to the Grand Slam season they had been hoping to see.

A final involving former US Open champions Medvedev and Djokovic on Sunday is obviously of high quality, but it is not the next chapter in tennis’s hottest rivalry between Djokovic and Alcaraz that has had the sport buzzing.

Djokovic did his part, breezing past big-hitting American Ben Shelton, but Alcaraz, bidding to become the first back-to-back US Open men’s champion since Federer in 2008, could not crack the third-seeded Russian, who would bend but not break.

Also Read: US Open Highlights: Djokovic sails past Shelton, enters 10th US Open final

There will be some juicy subplots to Sunday’s final, with Djokovic hunting a fourth US Open that would see him equal Margaret Court’s record haul of 24 Grand Slams and, along with it, a good measure of revenge on Medvedev.

The last time Djokovic and Medvedev clashed at the US Open was the 2021 final, where the Russian claimed his only major so far and denied the Serb a rare calendar Grand Slam.

“The challenge is you are playing a guy who has won 23 Grand Slams and I have only one,” said Medvedev, who also reached the 2019 US Open final losing to Rafa Nadal.

“When I beat him here I managed to play better than myself and I need to do it again there is no other way.”

A contest featuring the number one and third-ranked players got off to a predictably tight start.

Medvedev could not manufacture a single break opportunity, while Alcaraz had just a pair of chances that he could not convert as the set marched to a tie-break that the Russian dominated 7-3.

With Medvedev a perfect 26-0 after taking the first set in matches at Flushing Meadows, it was an ominous start for Alcaraz, as the Spaniard’s ever-present smile disappeared.

After holding serve to open the second, Medvedev was presented with his first break chance of the match and would not waste it, taking a 2-0 lead.

Down a set and break, Alcaraz suddenly appeared unsure while the 27-year-old Russian upped the pressure with another break at 5-1, thanks to a sensational backhand down the line that had the capacity crowd gasping.

A routine hold and suddenly a tight contest was looking like a rout, with Alcaraz needing to do something he had never done before.

Also Read: WATCH Rohan Bopanna’s incredible act of sportsmanship in US Open final

The 20-year-old Spaniard has done many things on a tennis court in his young career but has never come back from two sets down to win a match.

Backed into a corner, Alcaraz came out for the third with more determination, getting a momentum-building break with a cheeky lob to go up 3-1.

That was all Alcaraz would need, holding on to take the set 6-3 and taking the first step in his fight back.

The fourth set quickly became a battle of wills, particularly a tense 13-minute sixth game decided when Medvedev secured a hard-won break to get up 4-2.

A quick hold, and all the pressure was on Alcaraz, his title defence on life support, needing a break to extend the contest.

Alcaraz would make one final stand in a breathtaking game that seesawed back and forth, with Medvedev needing four match points to close the deal.

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