ATP Monte Carlo: Daniil Medvedev still reigns against Stefanos Tsitsipas


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ATP Monte Carlo: Daniil Medvedev still reigns against Stefanos Tsitsipas

Facing each other for the fourth time, the 10th seed Daniil Medvedev defeated the 6th seed Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-2, 1-6, 6-4 in an hour and 45 minutes to stay undefeated against the Greek and grab the 20th win of the season.

Daniil is the first player in 2019 with so many triumphs on his tally and will compete in the first Masters 1000 quarter-final, halted by Roger Federer in the fourth round in Miami a few weeks ago. Serving at terrible 38%, the Russian drew the most from his initial shot, losing serve three times and stealing Stefanos' serve four times from eight opportunities, taking two points more than the younger rival and staying in contention for the first Masters 1000 crown.

Tsitsipas had the advantage in the shortest points while the Russian took charge in more extended exchanges to forge the triumph and move over the top. Medvedev was off to a perfect start, losing four points on serve in the opening set and breaking Stefanos twice for a commanding 6-2 lead.

Tsitsipas struggled to find the range or impose his shots, making too many errors and getting broken in games three and five before Daniil closed the set with a hold in game eight. The Greek took charge in set number two, starting to dominate with controlled aggression and dropping only three points behind the initial shot to mount the pressure on Medvedev who couldn't endure it.

A forehand winner pushed the Greek 4-0 up and he painted a perfect forehand down the line winner in game seven for a 6-1 and the momentum before the decider. Carried by this momentum, Stefanos broke in the third game of the final set, staying in front only for a couple of minutes after a poor smash that cost him his serve, allowing Medvedev to level the score t 2-2.

Five good holds on both sides later, Tsitsipas served to stay in the set at 4-5 and couldn't endure the pressure, hitting a double fault to lose serve at 15 and propel Daniil into the last eight where he will face Novak Djokovic.

In the other early match of the day, Guido Pella toppled the 11th seed Marco Cecchinato 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 in two hours and 14 minutes, entering Monte Carlo with just seven Masters 1000 wins and advancing into the first quarter-final at this level to crack the top-30.

Cecchinato won their previous two matches although he couldn't repeat the same today, losing serve five times and securing only four breaks to hit the exit door and miss a chance to compete in the top eight. Guido had 26 winners and 26 unforced errors while Marco counted to 37 winners and 43 mistakes, toppling the Italian in the mid-range rallies to cross the finish line first.

Marco opened the clash with a double break, racing into a 4-1 lead before Guido shifted into a higher gear, pulling the break in game seven and clinching another one at 4-4 after a double fault from Cecchinato. Pella held at 15 to grab the first part of the match and delivered another one at the start of the second before Marco got it back to extend his chances, placing a fantastic backhand crosscourt winner at 5-4 for the pivotal break that sent the match into a decider.

There, we saw nine commanding holds and one break of serve for Pella at 4-4 when Cecchinato netted a backhand, sealing the deal with a hold at 15 for the biggest result in a career at this level, just like Medvedev.