Elite Company: Medvedev Joins Federer, Nadal, Djokovic & Thiem In This Category
On Friday, he upset World No. 1 and two-time champion Novak Djokovic to reach his first ATP Masters 1000 semi-final. A day earlier, he knocked out World No. 8 Stefanos Tsitsipas. It marks the first time Medvedev has posted back-to-back wins over Top 10 opponents.
Earlier this week, the 23-year-old Russian matched Roger Federer's match wins total for the season, and he's since taken the tour lead (21-6 record including his quarter-final win). Medvedev also joins the likes of Federer, Djokovic and Rafael Nadal at the top of another leaderboard: title leaders since 2018.
Here’s a look at his career highlights to date:
1. He Has Won Four ATP Titles
Medvedev is one of only five players to have won four or more titles since the start of the 2018 season, joining Roger Federer (6), Rafael Nadal (5), Novak Djokovic (5) and Dominic Thiem (4).
Medvedev’s four titles have all come on hard courts:
2018 Sydney International, d. Alex de Minaur 16 64 75
2018 Winston-Salem Open, d. Steve Johnson 64 64
2018 Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships, d. Kei Nishikori 62 64
2019 Sofia Open, d. Marton Fucsovics 64 63
2. He Has The Most Hard Court Wins Since 2018
From the start of the 2018 season to the conclusion of the 2019 March Masters, Medvedev leads the tour in match wins on hard courts, with 55 to Federer's 54. Here are the hard-court leaders during that 15-month period:
|Player||Hard Court W-L||Hard-Court Titles|
Meanwhile, on clay, Medvedev's four match wins this week are twice as many as he’d posted in his entire career entering Monte-Carlo.
3. He Wasn’t Even Supposed To Be In Sydney For That Maiden Title
Medvedev was hoping to compete in Auckland rather than Sydney in January 2018 because his girlfriend (now wife) had a visa for New Zealand. He couldn’t get into the Auckland main draw, so ended up competing in Sydney as a qualifier. The 84th-ranked Medvedev posted main draw wins over Philipp Kohlschreiber and Fabio Fognini en route to the final, where he defeated home favourite de Minaur.
“The first title changes anybody,” he reflects in his ATP My Story delivered by FedEx. “It gave me a big push in the year.”
4. His Biggest Title Came At The ATP 500 Tournament In Tokyo
Medvedev had to go through qualifying at the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships, and followed with an impressive run to the ATP 500 title. He did not drop a set in defeating Diego Schwartzman, Martin Klizan, Milos Raonic and Denis Shapovalov. In the final, he conceded just six games against two-time champion Nishikori.
"I've been showing amazing tennis here,” he said at the time. “I'm happy that what I have been doing all season in practice, physical workouts, worked out here in Tokyo. This is my biggest title, so I'm just really happy."
5. He Continues To Climb In The Rankings
Medvedev entered Monte-Carlo at a career-high No. 14 in the ATP Rankings, and will continue his climb after reaching his first Masters 1000 semi-final. He was outside the Top 60 at the start of August 2018, and broke into the Top 20 two months later following his title wins in Winston-Salem and Tokyo.
“If someone at this moment had told me I would be Top 50 or Top 20 at one point, I would probably say, ‘Stop dreaming, maybe one day I’m going to be, but I’m not sure.’ And when you’re here, you just want to continue improving,” he says in his My Story interview.
6. He’s A #NextGenATP Graduate
Two years ago, Medvedev competed at the inaugural Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan and reached the semi-finals. From that Class of 2017, half are inside the Top 20: Karen Khachanov (No. 12), Borna Coric (No. 13), Medvedev (No. 14) and Denis Shapovalov (No. 20). Meanwhile, 2017 alternate Stefanos Tsitsipas, whom Medevedev defeated in the Monte-Carlo third round, is No. 8.