Status: 02/21/2021 11:40 a.m.
Novak Djokovic remains inviolable at the Australian Open. Against Daniil Medvedev he triumphed for the ninth time in Melbourne. It was a lesson for the Russian challenger.
Novak Djokovic defended his kingdom in Melbourne with a masterly achievement and easily fended off the attack of the seemingly “unbeatable” Daniil Medvedev. The record champion and defending champion gave the formally strong Russian a lesson on Sunday (February 21, 2021) with a score of 7: 5, 6: 2, 6: 2 and triumphed in the ninth final at the Australian Open for the ninth time – a sensational record that only from Rafael Nadal’s 13 titles at the French Open is surpassed. Djokovic now has a total of 18 Grand Slam titles, in the historic three-way battle with his long-term rivals Roger Federer and Nadal (both 20) he is only two major triumphs to the record holders. For his third Melbourne title in a row, the world number one took in prize money of almost 1.8 million euros.
Second final bankruptcy for Medvedev
After only 1:53 hours he mated the gifted chess player Medvedev (25). At the same time, the 33-year-old Serb ended Medvedev’s impressive winning streak, who had recently won 20 matches in a row, including twelve against top 10 players. In his second Grand Slam final, the winner of the ATP Finals experienced the next disappointment – in 2019 the Muscovite had already lost to Nadal at the US Open. Also because of this impressive series, tennis greats had the impression solidified in the course of the tournament: If someone Djokovic can fall at his favorite tournament, it is Medvedev.
Only the first sentence was exciting
Medvedev was also not impressed by a nervous start. The game, led by the German chair referee Nico Helwerth, quickly reached a high level. In the Rod Laver Arena, the Russian almost always found an answer to Djokovic’s aggressive game, the Serb had to fight hard for every point. After 42 minutes he used a small weakness Medvedev to win the first set.
The final of the Australian Open was also the next attempt by the so-called “next generation” players to herald the end of the era of the superstars Djokovic, Federer and Nadal. The last US Open in Dominic Thiem had already produced a new champion – Federer was injured there, Nadal did not start, and Djokovic was disqualified in the round of 16 due to a lack of control. “ The re’s a lot of talk about the new generation that is supposed to take over from us,” said Djokovic: “But realistically, that hasn’t happened yet. With all due respect to the other guys, they still have a lot of work to do.”
Medvedev loses his nerve
That was shown in the final in Melbourne: Djokovic kept the pressure high even with the lead in his back, Medvedev, however, made more and more simple mistakes. The Russian smashed his bat out of frustration and quarreled more and more with himself. Djokovic, whose abdominal muscle complaints seemed to be completely over, remained highly concentrated and won the second round with ease. Medvedev became more and more desperate, the focus was gone. “He’s such a talented player, but today he doesn’t get on his nerves,” said Boris Becker at “Eurosport”. Mentally, the ice-cold Djokovic was far superior – and easily fended off one last riot of his opponent.