Second seed Daniil Medvedev came back from two sets to love and match point down 6-7(4) 3-6 7-6(2) 7-5 6-4 after four hours and 41 minutes.
Both players looked solid on serve throughout the first set until Auger-Aliassime broke through, earning the first break point of the set at 5-5 and eventually took the break. Medvedev promptly broke back though and the set went to a tiebreak. Auger-Aliassime was out-rallying Medvedev quite impressively and won the first-set tiebreak 7-4.
The 21-year-old grabbed an early break to go up 2-0 and was absolutely dominant on serve. Auger-Aliassime dropped only four points on serve all set with his first serve going 83% of the time, not giving Medvedev a chance to break back at any point. The Canadian took the second set 6-3 and looked well on his way to earning the best win of his career so far.
Auger-Aliassime had another chance at an early break, having a breakpoint saved by Medvedev at 1-1. That would be the only breakpoint in the set and we got another tiebreak. After the first three points, Medvedev not only got a minibreak to go up 2-1, he also got another, far larger advantage.
The Match Turns
“When they closed the roof, I suddenly felt the momentum change,” said Medvedev in the post-match interview.
Auger-Aliassime was looking like the better player when the tiebreak started but once the roof was closed due to rain, the conditions began to suit Medvedev and he looked a born-again. The Russian only lost one more point in that tiebreak and won it 7-2.
The final games of the fourth set saw the momentum zig-zag all over the place. Auger-Aliassime opened a match point on Medvedev’s serve at 5-4, which the Russian saved and went on to break the young Canadian in the next game. Medvedev serving the fourth set went up 40-0, but Auger-Aliassime saved all three set points to get to deuce. Medvedev won the next two points and the two were tied at two sets all.
Auger-Aliassime would have his chance again in the fifth, having three break points on Medvedev’s serve at 1-0. The Russian held and swung the pendulum the other way and break Auger-Aliassime’s serve. Both continued to hold and Medvedev was serving for the match at 5-4, when Auger-Aliassime worked to get two breakpoints and take the set to 5-5. The young Canadian failed to take those, Medvedev won the next four points and the match.
Next, Medvedev faces his rival Stefanos Tsitsipas in a re-match of the last year’s Australian Open semifinal. It will most probably be far less straightforward than their meeting then as Tsitsipas looked truly dangerous in his last match. However, despite the four hours and 40 minutes, Medvedev’s camera lens message was “not tired”, showing he is not to be discounted.
Main Photo from Getty.