Tennis: Medvedev says Australian Open final loss 'easy' to get over

AFP , Monday 26 Feb 2024

Daniil Medvedev said on Monday it was "easy" getting over his Australian Open final defeat by Jannik Sinner, unlike his reaction to his loss to Rafael Nadal at the same stage two years ago.

Daniil Medvedev
File Photo: Daniil Medvedev reacts during a match. Photo courtesy of Daniil Medvedev.

 

Medvedev blew a two-set lead in both the 2022 and 2024 Australian Open finals, but while he is "still disappointed" about the result against Nadal, he feels good about his performance against Sinner last month.

"To be honest, 'get over' was quite easy. As I said after the match, I felt like it would be easy because I played a great tournament, I played a good final," Medvedev told reporters in Dubai.

The Russian world number four will be contesting his first tournament since the Australian Open this week in Dubai, where he is the defending champion.

Medvedev skipped his title defence in Doha last week because he was dealing with a number of physical issues –- with his foot, adductor, and shoulder -– but feels ready to get back on court after spending the last seven days training in Dubai.

Medvedev, who opens his campaign against Alexander Shevchenko on Tuesday, has added French former world number six Gilles Simon to his team, to collaborate with his long-time coach Gilles Cervara.

"I thought about Gilles Simon for many different reasons. He knows tennis well. You can see it. He was able to beat me and make me feel not good on the court," said Medvedev, who lost three of his four meetings with Simon before the Frenchman retired.

"Together the two Gilles could discuss what was he doing to make me in trouble, and what can we do in practice to work on it. So far I really like it. We share a little bit the same mentality. We're easy-going."

This time last year, Medvedev was in the process of putting together an impressive 19-match winning streak, which included three consecutive title triumphs in Rotterdam, Doha, and Dubai, and a runner-up showing in Indian Wells.

An early exit at the 2023 Australian Open and a one-week dip outside the top 10 provided the fuel for that impressive run 12 months ago and he admits he feels "definitely different" arriving in Dubai this time around.

Medvedev says a stretch of sub-par results at the Grand Slams made him refocus ahead of Wimbledon last year, but he felt turning around his fortunes at the majors came at the expense of his results at the smaller tournaments in the last six months of 2023.

"Other tournaments, except Grand Slams, I didn't manage to find exactly the fire which you need to win the tournaments because you're going to play the best players in the world," explained the 28-year-old.

"That's what I want to try also to work on this year, to have this ability to be able to give my thousand percent like I did in Grand Slams, but also to be able to be fuelled enough in other tournaments. That's the first one where I start tomorrow."

Medvedev will be seeking a 21st ATP title in Dubai and will be looking to successfully defend a trophy for the first time in his career. He has won 20 titles at 20 different tournaments.

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