Daniil Medvedev showered Novak Djokovic with reward after dropping to him within the Australian Open remaining, even telling the story of a joint practice session a half-dozen years in the past or so in Monte Carlo, the place each have houses.
Back then Djokovic was No. 1 and was accumulating Grand Slam titles whereas Medvedev was but to crack the Top 300.
“He was late,” Medvedev joked on Sunday. “That’s the only bad thing I remember — that he was late.”
Otherwise, the purpose of Medvedev’s story was how pleasant and unassuming Djokovic was to somebody who had not made a major mark but.
“He was super nice to me,” Medvedev recalled.
Medvedev said that and other positive interactions with Djokovic “helped me a lot, I would say, for my confidence in my career.”
The 25-year-old Russian, who’s 8 years youthful than Djokovic, is now a two-time main finalist and can be ranked No. 3 on Monday. But Medvedev continues to be chasing that elusive Grand Slam title — he additionally misplaced in a remaining on the 2019 U.S. Open to Rafael Nadal.
Medvedev just isn’t used to being overwhelmed on a tennis court docket currently. Nearly 4 months and 20 matches glided by since he was on the fallacious finish of a scoreline. He had additionally compiled a dozen wins in a row in opposition to Top 10 opponents.
However, none of these contests got here in opposition to Djokovic within the Australian Open remaining. That’s a complete totally different problem: The 33-year-old from Serbia is 9-0 in title matches in Melbourne.
Medvedev shook off some early nerves to recuperate a break within the first set, however then Djokovic raised his degree. After dropping the primary set, Medvedev broke to open the second, signalling he was nonetheless within the contest.
Djokovic responded by profitable 11 of the subsequent 13 video games to place the end result past doubt.
Afterwards, Djokovic stated he figures it’s only a matter of time till Medvedev wins a Grand Slam title, though he prompt he would not thoughts if that took a couple of years.
That may give Djokovic time to catch Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who’ve 20 majors every.
It additionally may imply spending rather less time collectively outdoors of tournaments.
“We used to spend extra time collectively. We used to practice extra in Monaco. You’re not calling me anymore!” Djokovic joked during the trophy ceremony. “But it’s nice to hear you’re thinking good things about me.”