Reilly Opelka: Daniil Medvedev maybe best returner after Novak Djokovic

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Reilly Opelka: Daniil Medvedev maybe best returner after Novak Djokovic

Rising American Reilly Opelka dropped a big praise on Daniil Medvedev after the Toronto Masters final, insisting the Russian is a top-3 returner in the world. Opelka, who rose to a career-high ranking of No. 23 in the world following his week in Toronto, was beaten by Medvedev in the Toronto final.

“Medvedev is top three best returners in the world, you could say,” Opelka said after the Toronto final. “I'd say, especially for a big guy, maybe he's No. 2 behind Novak (Djokovic)... Because he's long, he can afford to stand far back, because he's lanky, you know."

Medvedev focused on his return against Opelka

Opelka is one of the best servers on the Tour and Medvedev knew that returning well would be the key for him in the Toronto final. Medvedev read exceptionally Opelka's serve as he broke the American three times during his straight-set win.

"When you play Reilly, I think still the biggest factor is how you serve and how you return. Actually, my serve was not on top point today. That's why I had breakpoints to save. That's why it was sometimes close calls on my serve," Medvedev said.

"But I was very good on return. I managed to put pressure on him almost nonstop. I think he didn't almost have maybe one or two easy games in the match. That's what made the difference, if we talk about tennis. "[When] I played my first Masters final, I was happy just to be there playing against Rafa.

I always try my best, but something was wrong, so I lost super easy and super fast. It can be the same for everybody. I know for me I think experience is the key... This week he beat some really strong guys to be in the final, so probably next time in the final [we] can wait for a more dangerous Reilly than today."