Daniil Medvedev disappointed the home crowd at the Australian Open, winning a pulsating second-round match with Nick Kyrgios.
In front of a raucous crowd inside the Rod Laver Arena, Kyrgios and Medvedev served up some truly enthralling fare, with the captivating Australian throwing all he had at Medvedev with trademark creativity and elan.
But the Russian was unflustered in eventually taking a 7-6 (7-1), 6-4, 4-6, 6-2 win, though revealed his displeasure at the behaviour of the Melbourne crowd.
‘A hell of a match’ – Kyrgios has ‘ultimate respect’ for Tsitsipas despite fiery encounter
"I came to win this match and I am happy that I managed to do it," Medvedev said after reaching the third round.
"When you get booed between first and second serves it is not easy, so I just had to stay calm and win the match."
Kyrgios delights fans with tweener, Medvedev responds with winner
It was a comment that drew boos from the crowd, who were in actuality reproducing the Cristiano Ronaldo impersonations that have become a bugbear of several players in Melbourne.
Medvedev quietened them and urged them to "respect" on-court interviewer Jim Courier, but the Russian, who is the top seed remaining, appears to have become something of a pantomime villain in Melbourne.
"I'm not angry, just a little bit disappointed," Medvedev clarified in Eurosport's Cube. "You expect it when you play a home favourite like Nick. Those who boo me probably have a low IQ."
The post-match sparring rather overshadowed a clash of outstanding quality. The two players traded a break apiece in a first set that progressed to a tiebreak.
But Medvedev then produced a string of successive, impressive points, Kyrgios claiming only the opening point on serve as the Russian took a set lead, 7-6 (1).
An even encounter between two expressive players continued after the interval, progressing on serve to 3-4.
'An inspired break' - Kyrgios stuns Medvedev with brilliant attack
Kyrgios then survived a marathon eighth game to maintain parity, but was unable to prevent Medvedev extending his lead two games later, the second seed snatching it 6-4.
It seemed to stir the Australian, now rallying the home crowd behind him. With his typically unique style of unorthodox strokes from all-manner of angles, Kyrgios broke and stayed in the battle to make the third round with a swifter third set.
But Medvedev steeled himself, blocking out the crowd and breaking twice to take victory.
The Russian, normally prone to on-court outbursts of emotion, showed impressive resolve to stand firm and keep his composure, setting up a meeting with Botic van de Zandschulp.
"It was a funny match in a way because we both serve big," Medvedev commented on his performance. "I managed to return a little bit more in crucial moments, and that was enough.
"I think my game is probably ready, but then you have tough opponents like Nick. That's why we love tennis - anything can happen."
- - -
Stream the 2022 Australian Open live and on demand on discovery+. A subscription for discovery+ is now £29.99 for the first year for UK users, down from £59.99
‘Never seen anything like it’ – Calls for stricter umpiring after Kyrgios-Tsitsipas clash
‘It's constant bullying’ – Tsitsipas hits out at ‘evil side’ to Kyrgios
Share this article