Saturday, July 13, 2024

Wimbledon: Jannik Sinner’s hopes of a maiden title at All England Club ended by Daniil Medvedev

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World No 1 Jannik Sinner saw his hopes of a maiden Wimbledon title ended by Daniil Medvedev in the quarter-finals on Tuesday.

Medvedev overcame a struggling Sinner to dump the top seed out of the tournament and reach a second-consecutive semi-final.

The fifth seed, who has now matched his best Wimbledon run from last year, said: “I knew if I want to beat Jannik, it needed to be a tough match. I felt at one moment he was not feeling that good but I knew it could still get away. It was great points, great match, and I’m really happy.”

Statement win for Medvedev

Daniil Medvedev has reached a ninth men’s singles semi-final at Grand Slam events, surpassing Alexander Zverev (eight) for the most of any player born since 1990

Since 2000, Medvedev is now only the fourth player to defeat the No 1 on three or more occasions at Grand Slam events along with Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Stanislas Wawrinka

Sinner appeared to be feeling unwell, holding his head in his hands after calling the doctor early in the third set, and being helped off court for a medical time-out.

A possible retirement looked on the cards but Sinner gradually improved on the resumption and may have won the match had he taken one of two set points in the third.

He managed to forced a deciding set but it was Medvedev who eventually claimed a 6-7 (9-7) 6-4 7-6 (7-4) 2-6 6-3 victory after exactly four hours to set up a clash with either defending champion Carlos Alcaraz or American Tommy Paul.

It snapped a Medvedev’s five-match losing sequence to Sinner and avenged his bitter defeat by the Italian in this year’s Australian Open final, when he squandered a two-set lead.

The Centre Court roof magnified the crispness of the ball striking as the two men went toe-to-toe in an opening set full of long rallies, dragging each other from one corner to the other.

Neither player even threatened a break and nerves were on show in the tie-break. Both men double-faulted, Sinner at 5-5, but Medvedev missed two routine forehands and then double-faulted again on the Italian’s second opportunity.

Jannik Sinner has a medical time out during his match against Daniil Medvedev on day nine of the 2024 Wimbledon Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London. Picture date: Tuesday July 9, 2024.
Sinner has a medical time out during his defeat to Medvedev

The first signs that all was not well with Sinner came in the third game of the second set when Medvedev took advantage of lacklustre play from the top seed to break for the first time.

Sinner withstood more break points at 2-4 but, when he dropped serve again at 1-1 in the third, it was clear the 22-year-old was in trouble.

It appeared he may not be able to continue at all when he was led off court by the doctor but he walked gingerly back several minutes later and resumed.

The Italian still did not look at all well, walking very slowly between points, and he set about trying to shorten the points, mixing win-or-bust groundstrokes with drop shots.

It was enough to keep him in touch until Medvedev served for the third set, where the assurance the fifth seed had shown suddenly deserted him and from nowhere Sinner broke back.

The resurgent Italian, who was wrapping an ice towel around his neck between games, then had two chances to clinch the set but Medvedev saved one with an ace before Sinner’s backhand struck the net.

Another ace gave Medvedev the tie-break to put him a big step closer to the semi-finals only for Sinner to come surging back in a quick fourth set and send the contest to a decider.

Sinner now seemed the favourite but the momentum switched once again in the fourth game when, having saved two break points, Sinner netted a forehand.

And Medvedev was nerveless serving out his best victory at Wimbledon to reach a ninth Grand Slam semi-final.

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