Medvedev Marches Into US Open Final
The second seed, who has dropped just one set en route to the final, is now one match away from capturing his first major title at Flushing Meadows. The Russian soaked up pressure from Auger-Aliassime’s powerful groundstrokes and rallied from 2-5 in the second set, saving two set points at 4-5, before advancing after two hours and three minutes.
“It was a strange match a little bit in the second set,” Medvedev said in his on-court interview. “I think everyone felt like it was going to be one set all and then you never know where the match would go. I managed to save the set points and the match turned around completely.”
The 25-year-old, who hit 37 winners and committed 25 unforced errors, struck the ball with great depth as he forced the Canadian to overhit, extending his ATP Head2Head Series lead against Auger-Aliassime to 2-0.
“I don’t think I played my best today, but I am really happy to be in the final on Sunday,” Medvedev said. “When he had two set points, the only thing I was thinking was, don’t hit an ace on the line and I am going to make you play.
“At 5-4, I knew it was an important point in the match where I needed to do everything at my best because that was the moment I could break him mentally and that is what happened.”
Medvedev has fond memories at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, having enjoyed a run to his maiden Slam final in New York in 2019. The 25-year-old rallied from two sets down to force a fifth set against Rafael Nadal, before the Spaniard prevailed 6-4 in the decider.
Of the 25-year-old's possible final opponents, Medvedev trails Djokovic 3-5 in their ATP Head2Head Series, losing to the top seed in his second major final at the Australian Open this year. The World No. 2 also trails Zverev 4-5, but has won their three most recent encounters at the ATP Cup, Nitto ATP Finals and at the Rolex Paris Masters.
“If it is going to be the same match on Sunday [as the 2019 US Open final], I just hope I can win this time,” Medvdev added. “First of all, I am going to enjoy the next semi-final because it is going to be a great match.”
Medvedev has enjoyed a strong North American hard-court swing, having captured his fourth ATP Masters 1000 crown in Toronto, before advancing to the semi-finals in Cincinnati. The second seed has now compiled a 17-2 record since Wimbledon.
Earlier this season, the 12-time tour-level champion helped guide Russia to the ATP Cup title and also lifted trophies on hard in Marseille and grass in Mallorca. Medvedev now holds a 46-10 record on the season.
Medvedev was aggressive and consistent throughout against Auger-Aliassime, causing the Canadian problems with his flat groundstrokes. The Russian also sat deep behind the baseline and covered the court well as the 21-year-old struggled to hit through the 25-year-old.
After Medvedev, closed out the opener, Auger-Aliassime begun to find more success on return in the second set as he demonstrated impressive footwork to run around second serves to the ad court and force Medvedev back with his aggressive forehand.
However, Medvedev’s ability to chase down ball after ball put pressure on Auger-Alissiame, who from 5-2 lost five straight games and squandered two sets points when serving at 5-4, as Medvedev took control.
The 25-year-old continued to dominate the longer rallies in the third set, moving up the court as the points progressed as he looked to get the first heavy strike in during the rally. With his victory, the Russian has still never lost a hard-court Slam match after winning the first set (31-0). Medvedev converted all five break point opportunities he created in the match as he raised his level in the key moment.
US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 10, 2021
The 21-year-old, who was the youngest men’s singles semi-finalist in New York since 20-year-old Juan Martin Del Potro won the title in 2009, has enjoyed a strong North American hard-court swing.The 12th seed advanced to his second ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final in Cincinnati, before defeating Roberto Bautista Agut and Frances Tiafoe en route to the last four at Flushing Meadows.