Magical Medvedev extinguishes sparkling Sinner

19 February 2023

King Willem-Alexander appreciated how good the show was: Daniil Medvedev was crowned the winner of the 50th ABN AMRO Open after a world class final against Jannik Sinner : 5-7 6-2 6-2. A Rotterdam Ahoy filled to the brim fully enjoyed the final masterpiece of an unforgettable jubilee tennis week.

Right from the first set of strokes, 27-year-old Daniil Medvedev, and Jannik Sinner, six years his junior, offered an outstanding duel.  Both finalists had already made a big impression on their way towards the final battle with compelling victories. Young Italian defeated tournament favourite Stefanos Tsitsipas, while Medvedev sent home defending champion Felix Auger-Aliassime in remarkable fashion.

In the final battle, Medvedev and Sinner maintained the high level they had displayed throughout the week. Both players patiently operated from the baseline, with the Italian took more initiative with phenomenal accelerations in the often long rallies. That strategy clearly paid off, because a sparkling Sinner won the first set after 57 gruelling minutes (7-5). In the second set, Sinner, who had already won last week's tournament in Montpellier, started making a few more mistakes than his opponent. Soon after, Medvedev appeared to be an impenetrable  'living wall' and eagerly took the advantage. In the deciding set, Medvedev, who had won four of his previous confrontations with Sinner, forced an early break. Looking slightly tired across the net, Sinner couldn't recover.

A relieved Medvedev confessed afterwards that he had a hard time in the first set. 'Jannik was simply the better player in the first set. After that, I started to play a bit more aggressively and came into the game more determined. I also had the feeling that I was physically in a slightly better shape than Jannik, who was getting tired.’

A statement to which Jannik Sinner agreed: 'I have had two very nice, demanding weeks, with a tournament win in Montpellier and the final here in Ahoy. It was a high-level clash, and although I lost to Daniil again, I feel I'm getting closer and closer. In any case, Rotterdam Ahoy is a very special tournament for me. Three years ago, when I started here with a wild card, I beat a top-10 player (David Goffin) for the first time. And this week I beat a top-3 player (Tsitsipas) for the first time.'

While Sinner mourned his defeat, Medvedev was overjoyed with his first tournament victory in Rotterdam Ahoy in the bag. In doing so, he fulfilled a long-cherished wish. 'I always like to play in Rotterdam and made it to the semifinals (2019) before, but to be honest I have also played very bad games here in recent years. I am happy that I was able to maintain a high level all week this year. And it is a great feeling that my name is finally on the winner's ring in Ahoy. That's a nice bonus for a fantastic week.'

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