Comparing to round one, this one wasn’t quite such a quick walkthrough for the World No. 1 Daniil Medvedev. But the 26-year-old has reached the quarterfinals at the 29. TERRA WORTMANN OPEN by a strong fighting performance. He beat Ilya Ivashka 7:6(3), 6:3 in a little more than 1.5 hours and will stay in the tournament as the main attraction.
Some of the tournament visitors will probably remember last years unpredicted strong performance by Ilya Ivashkas, when record-winning Roger Federer was exasperated by his game numerous times, the score then 6:7, 5:7. After that the career of the player from Minsk really got going. He got to the round-of-16 in Wimbledon and celebrated his first ever tournament victory in Winston Salem. So he wasn’t really a total outsider ahead of the match this time.
The match started as expected. The World No. 1 had two break chances in the seventh game. He missed his chances and this could have meant bitter revenge. His service game was a problem for Medvedev at 4:5. Three times the strong playing Ivashka got a set point. Medvedev fended off one in his second service with a shot of 204 kilometres per hour – astonishing the crowd at the packed OWL Arena. It went into the tiebreak, which was dominated by the favourite to win from Moscow. An ace, 5:2, and then, just a little later the first set was decided.
The best player in the last 52 weeks wasn’t lacking motivation, though. Time and time again he clenched his fist in the direction of his box, from where trainer Fernando Vicente and his wife Daria were supporting him.
After switching sides there was reason to worry for the fans of the 1.98 metre giant; he started the set with two double-faults. After that, though, the US-Open winner of 2021 found his game. A break at 3:1 seemed to be it. Ivashka was feeling his weaker second service more and more. He only won 40 percent of points after second service. The man on the other side, however, showed the strong nerves of a top player. In the seventh game he was behind 0:40 serving – but then got the game through, though. A little later he converted the match point.