Daniil Medvedev calls for Illuminati and edges Sebastian Korda

Daniil Medvedev battled past Sebastian Korda at Caja Magica

by Jovica Ilic
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Daniil Medvedev calls for Illuminati and edges Sebastian Korda
© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Daniil Medvedev has yet to show his A-game at the Madrid Masters, never playing in the quarter-final at Caja Magica. The Russian is trying to change that this week, passing two tight obstacles and moving into the last 16. Daniil faced Sebastian Korda in the third round and earned a 5-7, 7-6, 6-3 victory in two hours and 25 minutes.

The Russian embraced a funny exchange with the chair umpire, asking why the roof was not closing when the rain started. The umpire explained the decision was not on him but them. Daniil lost his temper and asked who are they and are they Illuminati.

Medvedev stayed focused in the closing stages of the second set, forcing a decider and rattling off the final three games to emerge at the top. Korda fought well, firing 13 aces and facing five break points.

Daniil Medvedev & Sebastian Korda, Madrid 2024© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

The American defended three, staying competitive until the middle of the final set.

Sebastian pushed strong on the second-serve return, earning 11 chances and converting only two, which cost him dearly. They stayed neck and neck in the shortest rallies up to four strokes, and Daniil built the advantage in the more advanced ones.

Korda returned well in the second game of the encounter, delivering a break and moving in front. The American produced a fine hold in the fifth game and earned two break chances in the next one. Medvedev saved them and turned the tables, pulling the break back in game seven after Korda's loose backhand.

The Russian held at love in game eight, leveling the score at 4-4 and producing another fine service game while serving for the set at 4-5.

Daniil Medvedev, Madrid 2024© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Daniil Medvedev booked a place in the Madrid Masters last 16.

Korda moved 6-5 up and made an ultimate push on the return in the 12th game.

Daniil defended five break points before spraying a forehand error on the sixth, handing the opener to Sebastian after 45 minutes. They served well at the beginning of the second set before facing issues in games six and seven.

Medvedev survived a break point at 3-2, remaining on the positive side and squandering his opportunities in the next one. Korda denied another break point at 4-4, firing a service winner and closing the game after deuces. Daniil served to stay in the match in games ten and 12, holding after deuces and surviving after being two points away from the loss two times.

Sebastian Korda, Madrid 2024© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

The Russian delivered three mini-breaks in the tie break, opening a 6-3 lead and seizing the second set point with a smash winner at the net, forcing a decider after an hour and 50 minutes.

They stayed neck and neck in the first half of the decider, locking the result at 3-3 and thinking about another tie break. However, Daniil stepped in and held at 15 in game seven before earning two break points in the next one with a beautiful short backhand crosscourt winner.

Sebastian sprayed a backhand error on the first, falling 5-3 behind and allowing Daniil to serve for the win. The Russian sealed the deal with an ace in game nine, passing a formidable rival and moving into the last 16.

Daniil Medvedev Sebastian Korda
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