Cincinnati Flashback: Daniil Medvedev matches Rafael Nadal's numbers

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Cincinnati Flashback: Daniil Medvedev matches Rafael Nadal's numbers

Playing his 13th match in the last 19 days, an in-form Russian Daniil Medvedev produced another excellent performance in the summer of 2019. After reaching the final in Washington and Montreal, Daniil was on a similar course in Cincinnati, defeating the fellow Russian Andrey Rublev in the quarters to score the season's 41st victory and match Rafael Nadal.

Medvedev beat Rublev 6-2, 6-3 in 61 minutes for his third Masters 1000 semi-final of the season. Rublev failed to produce a similar level that brought him an impressive victory over Roger Federer a day earlier. Daniil dominated on both serve and return and controlled the scoreboard to advance into the next round and set Novak Djokovic clash.

Both players served at 55%, and Daniil delivered much better numbers behind the initial shot, playing against one break point and taking half of the return points to grab breaks from seven opportunities.

Daniil Medvedev beat Andrey Rublev in the 2019 Cincinnati quarter-final.

Medvedev finished the match with 15 winners and 11 unforced errors, nothing too big but good enough to leave Andrey far behind, as the younger Russian hit 16 winners and 26 unforced mistakes, 20 more than against Federer!

They stayed neck and neck in the shortest rallies up to four strokes, and Daniil did his magic in the more extended ones. He took 28 out of 40 exchanges with at least five strokes to find himself over the top. Rublev's forehand was nowhere near as good as the previous day, spraying an error from the stronger wing to suffer a break already in the second game on Daniil's fourth break chance.

Defending the baseline with power and accuracy, Medvedev drew another forehand error from Andrey in the third game to confirm the break and raced into a 4-0 lead after 13 minutes! The younger Russian pulled one break back in the next game when Daniil's backhand found the net, but that was all he could do, spraying a forehand error at 2-5 to hand another break to the rival and the set in under half an hour.

Medvedev held at the beginning of the second set and broke Rublev at love to confirm the victory, taking a set and a break advantage and serving well in the remaining four games to cross the finish line. Andrey reduced the deficit to 3-5 before Medvedev sealed the deal with three service winners in the next game to arrange a meeting against Novak Djokovic.