In their first two encounters, Daniil Medvedev and Reilly Opelka had played five tie breaks in six sets, with the Russian winning both matches in Washington and Miami. Today, Daniil and Reilly battled for the third time in St.
Petersburg, with the American prevailing 2-6, 7-4, 6-4 in an hour and 55 minutes, dethroning Medvedev and advancing into the quarters. Reilly scored the sixth top-10 triumph, overcoming a slow start and prevailing in the closing stages of sets two and three to move over the top and remain on the title course.
Medvedev won 12 points more than Opelka, dropping only four points behind the first serve and facing four break points. Reilly grabbed two breaks from those, surviving tough service games at 2-2 and 3-3 in the decider and prevailing with a single break.
In the opening nine service games, Daniil lost only four points, producing one hold at love after another before losing ground when it mattered the most at 5-6 in set number two. After those chances he wasted on the return, Daniil got broken in the final set's tenth game, suffering the fourth loss in the last five matches!
The American landed an ace down the T line to close the first game, facing two break chances at 1-1 and repelling both with winners to remain on the positive side of the scoreboard. Untroubled in his games, Medvedev was pushing strong on the return, taming the rival's initial shot at 2-2 and placing a forehand down the line winner to grab a break and move in front.
Daniil held at 15 with a service winner to confirm the advantage, secured another break in game seven following Reilly's double fault and sealing the opener with an ace at 5-2. The returners claimed three points in the opening six games of set number two before Opelka repelled a break point, closing the game with a service winner to move 4-3 up and gain confidence.
As we already said, Medvedev barely lost a point in the opening nine service games, serving at 5-6 to reach a tie break.
Reilly Opelka played better when it mattered the most to beat Daniil Medvedev.
Out of sudden, Reilly created three break chances with a forehand winner, seizing the last one with an incredible volley winner at the net to take the set 7-5 and force a decider.
The Russian lost three points in the first four service games but it wasn't enough to carry him through after wasting opportunities on the return. At 2-2, Opelka landed two winners to erase break points, closing the game with a service winner to stay in touch.
The American remained focused and saved two more break opportunities in game seven, bringing the game home with a forehand down the line winner to lock the result at 4-4. Medvedev lost ground while serving to stay in the match in game ten, suffering a break following a forehand crosscourt winner from Opelka, who celebrated his career's biggest victory.