Top seed and defending champion Daniel Medvedev has set a blockbuster in the fourth round US Open Showdown with red-hot Aussie Nick Kyrgios after beating China’s Wu Yibing in the early hours of Saturday morning at Flushing Meadows.
The match begins around 11pm after Serena Williams’ pulsating three-hour final against Ajla Tomljanovic inside Arthur Ashe Stadium, Medvedev sacked Wu 6-4 6-2 6-2 to reach the second week for the fourth straight year.
When asked what it was like to see Williams’ farewell performance while waiting to be seated, Medvedev said: “It was a crazy match, almost three hours. It was definitely a shame she lost but if this was the last match of her career it was an amazing match and she was close to winning. But Ajla played at a great level and congratulations to her.”
After Medvedev won a 35-shot rally – the longest of the tournament – to avoid losing serve in the final game of the second set, of 2020 Nitto ATP Finals Champion raced to the finish line and finished the match in an hour and 55 minutes.
Medvedev will put his world No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP rankings on the line against Kyrgios, who defeated the 26-year-old at last month’s ATP Masters 1000 event in Montreal, where he increased his ATP Head2Head lead over Medvedev to 3: 1 expanded. The 2021 US Open Champion is currently on backlog Rafael Nadal in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings and will relinquish his No.1 crown post-tournament if it falls to Kyrgios.
“We played great games. I think everyone was pretty close on the scoreboard,” Medvedev said. “It’s 3-1 for him but I’ll try to do better this time and it’s going to be a great game for the spectators.
“Tonight I feel like I played at a pretty high level and I served a little better than him which was key. There were a lot of close games and I felt the level of the game was high.”
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Attempting to become the first player to win US Open since back-to-back Roger Federer Medvedev, who had five consecutive wins between 2004 and 2008, has advanced to the fourth round without dropping a set in the first week. He is also targeting his third appearance in the final at Flushing Meadows after taking Nadal to five sets in the 2019 title match.
Medvedev has spent a total of 16 weeks at the world No. 1 since February.
Wu is the first Chinese in the tournament’s history (since 1881) to reach the third round. He has risen to career 129 in the Pepperstone ATP Live rankings as he continues his battle with compatriot Zhang Zhizhen (120) to become the first Chinese to break the top 100.