Daniil Medvedev returned to the US Open semifinals dismissing his friend and countryman Andrey Rublev in a tough 3-setter 7-6(6), 6-3, 7-6(5). After an even set, the 22-year-old Rublev jumped out to a 5-1 lead in the opening set breaker and held three set points at 6-3. But Medvedev showed his class going into “wall” mode and when he connected on a reach backhand winner down the line, that broke Rublev’s spirit.
Medvedev converted the only break point of the match to take the second, then hung on in the third in another breaker.
Medvedev’s serve provided plenty of ammo with 16 aces and he never had a save a break point.
“I’m satisfied with everything today,” Medvedev said. “I think it was a really high quality match.
“I started, as I always do, trying to see what he does, a little bit defensively. Then during the match I felt like I needed to change it because he was actually better than me in defense today, and he was controlling the pace of the rally when we were playing slow.
“I needed to put it up, and it worked a lot. I was making a lot of winners I saw after the match, which I think is amazing when we play with Rublev. That I had more winners than him, it’s something unbelievable for me. But it shows that I was able to really adjust my game during the match and do it in a right way.”
About the only issue with Medvedev was a late third set trainer visit.
“I just got a little bit tired at the end of the third set with really physical match that we had,” Medvedev said. “My shoulder started to hurt just a little. And in order not to finish the third set, imagine I would serve one serve, and I don’t know, just pull my shoulder.
“I call the physio, so he took care of it. I was cramping a little bit, so he also masked me, and it helped a lot. As you saw at the end, I was able to be 100%.”
In the evening, Dominic Thiem had his way with 21-year-old Alex De Minaur 6-1, 6-2, 6-4. The two exchanged service breaks early in the match but otherwise it was a lopsided affair with Thiem overpowering the Australian.
“I had a great feeling from the first moment on, actually,” Thiem told ESPN. “It looks way easier on the scoresheet than it was.”
Thiem and Medvedev will collide on a Big 3-less Friday.
“There is no Roger, Rafa or Novak, but there is Daniil, Sascha and Pablo. They are three amazing players. Every single one of us deserves his first major title,” Thiem said. “Everyone will give it all and that’s what’s on the mind. Once we step on the court, the other three are forgotten anyway.”
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