World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev won his first grand slam title Sunday, beating world No. 1 Novak Djokovic in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 in the US Open final.Djokovic had been looking to win a record 21st grand slam title and complete the first men’s calendar grand slam — winning the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open in the same year — since Rod Laver in 1969.
Medvedev, who defeated 12th seed Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada in straight sets to reach the final, was appearing in his third career grand slam final, having lost the previous two. The 25-year-old lost to Rafael Nadal in five sets in the 2019 US Open final and fell in the Australian Open final to Djokovic in straight sets earlier this year.
However, Medvedev looked ominous throughout this year’s competition, dropping just one set on the way to the final where he was able to get revenge for his Melbourne loss and scupper Djokovic’s hopes of a year for the ages. After his semifinal win against Auger-Aliassime, Medvedev said he learned a lot from the lost final against Djokovic in Melbourne.”He was playing different than the matches he did before me, and I was kind of not ready for it, so now I am,” Medvedev said of Djokovic’s tactics.
For Medvedev, his 2019 US Open experience was a time of ups and downs. During a match, he was fined for unsportsmanlike conduct and a visible obscenity. As a result, he became a defacto villain in the eyes of the New York crowd. However, because of his personality, charisma and excellent play, he won them back over the following rounds.Before this year’s US Open, he hoped it would be a “love” relationship between him and the fans. And since the experience in 2019, he has learned to just be himself. “Of course, I take lessons,” he explained to CNN Sport before the tournament this year. “What you should do and what you shouldn’t do on the tennis court. But as a tennis player, I’m definitely different.”It was a new experience that made me believe in myself even more and made me better as a tennis player.”