All good things come to an end, and so will the Australian Open 2021. For a place in the finals, Russia’s Daniil Medvedev and Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas will battle in Melbourne Park on Friday.
This will be the young Greek’s third attempt to reach the finals of a Grand Slam tournament. Previously, he has been denied such a feat at the Australian Open 2019 and US Open 2020.
Whereas the 24-year-old Russian is bidding to reach a Majors final for a second time. He finished as the runner-up at the US Open 2019 to Spanish machine Rafael Nadal.
Daniil Medvedev v Stefanos Tsitsipas: Preview
The fourth seed, Daniil Medvedev, has had a phenomenal tournament. With four straight-sets wins and one five-setter, the Russian has reached a new career-high ranking of No. 3.
In his latest victory, Daniil effortlessly defeated compatriot and World No. 8 Andrey Rublev 7-5, 6-3, 6-2. He is fresh and laser-focused on achieving his maiden Grand Slam glory.
Across the net, he will meet the fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas who stunned Nadal in five sets to reach the semi-finals. What’s more, the 22-year-old Greek is playing with a renewed spirit in this tournament.
Together, the two capable next-generation players will stage what the future of tennis. They will play at the Rod Laver Arena with 50% crowds in the stadium.
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Medvedev v Tsitsipas: Head-to-Head
The pair have faced each other on six different occasions, where the Russian leads 5-1. More than that, they also have a history of fighting with their mouths at the Miami Masters in 2018.
But a semi-final match at the Australian Open 2021 will take their rivalry to a whole new level. They last met in the 2019 ATP Finals round-robin stage, where Tsitsipas recorded his first win against Medvedev and went on to win that title.
Unquestionably, they both will want this next win under their belt, whatever the cost. Other than the finals spot, the reigning ATP Finals winner has his 19-match streak on the stake.
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Medvedev v Tsitsipas: Prediction
It will be an ultimate backhands’ battle. They both have an innate strength to carry on with long rallies throughout the match. Therefore, it will be a good match for the crowd in the stadium.
However, the only challenge for Tsitsipas is to put the Russian out of his position. Without that, Medvedev will return every ball flat with precision, making it harder for the Greek to find balance.
Besides strategy, Daniil will be coming off fresh after his comfortable win over Rublev. Whereas Tsitsipas used four hours to beat the Spaniard, hence will need to recover fast.
In the end, temperament and mentality will be the only things distinguishing the victor from the other. And while they both are looking mentally strong; the odds favour the Russian an inch more.
The winner will meet the better between Novak Djokovic and first-time semi-finalist Aslan Karatsev in the finals.
Prediction: Medvedev def. Tsitsipas in the final set.
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