Austrian Dominic Thiem, 25 and number 3 in the world ranking , defeated Russian Daniil Medvedev, of 24 years and fifth in the second semifinal of the US Open tennis agreed to the deciding match of the tournament, to be held on Sunday. That day he will meet the German Alexander Zverev, who in the first turn had defeated the Spanish Pablo Carreño Busta in five sets. The score of the last match of the day in New York favored Thiem by 6-2, 7-6, 7-6.
For the Austrian, it will be the fourth final of a Grand Slam contest. He has lost two at Roland Garros so far, in 2018 and 2019, and at this year’s Australian Open. Medvedev is the outgoing runner-up at Flushing Meadows (last season he lost to Rafael Nadal). Meanwhile, for Zverev, champion of the Masters in 2018 and currently seventh in the ranking, it will be the first definition at this level.
Thiem defeated Medvedev because his mind worked better on decisive points and because his physique gave him an extra gear throughout the match. The Russian tried to run him from one side of the base to the other with each shot, but the Austrian, an athlete, reached every ball and frustrated Medvedev. In addition, the 2018 Buenos Aires champion was more accurate in both tie-breaks. The straight-sets triumph allows Thiem to reach the final more rested, even though he finished playing about three hours after Zverev.
To get to the decisive match, which will be a rematch of the semi-final that he beat his good German friend in Australia 2020, Thiem had to work hard. Despite what the scorekeeper suggests, he had little and nothing left over; in fact, Medvedev was twice 5-3 up, in the final sets. He even counted a set point in the second. Thiem drew strength from where there seemed to be none. He did not give up any ball and thus gave a display of the character of which his coach, the Chilean Nicolás Massú, may well be proud.
In the Arthur Ashe Stadium, of the Flushing Meadows complex, New York, Thiem also suffered some passages beyond the partial result. He slipped several times and was even treated for a sprained right ankle. On one such occasion, the Austrian complained. Nobody in particular; there wasn’t even an audience on the world’s biggest tennis stage. He was unhappy with himself and didn’t understand why he had ended up on the floor.