Australian Open final: Medvedev up against giant Djokovic

Medvedev will look to win his Grand Slam title while Djokovic looks to clinch a record ninth Australian Open title

Djokovic or Medvedev - who will have the last laugh in Australian Open final?

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic will square off against fourth-seeded Daniil Medvedev in the Australian Open (AO) at the Rod Laver Arena on Sunday.

It is an undisputed fact that Djokovic has indeed reigned supreme in Melbourne over time as he looks to lift a record ninth Australian Open title but on Sunday, he faces a stubborn Russian in Medvedev who is rapidly climbing the ladder to establish himself as one of the most prolific players in the tennis fraternity.

A final at the Rod Laver arena maybe untested waters for Daniil but he is not a stranger to a Grand Slam Final. He reached the US Open final in 2009 and went toe-to-toe with the then No.1 Rafael Nadal in a closely-contested five-setter where he eventually lost the final to the Spaniard.

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Even though Djokovic said he felt at his best after ending Aslan Karatsev’s dream run (6-3, 6-4, 6-2), his road to the final has been anything but smooth. After finishing his first match against Chardy in straight sets, all his following matches before the semi-final against Karatsev went beyond three sets. His apparent muscle tear during his match against 27th seed Taylor Fritz did not help his cause as he needed five sets to beat the American.

If Medvedev wants to win his first Grand Slam on Sunday, he must do what nobody has ever done- beat Djokovic at a Australian Open final. A win for Medvedev on Sunday would mean that he would join Dominic Thiem as the only player born in the 1990s to win a Slam.

Medvedev relished a victory against Djokovic in the 2020 Nitto ATP Finals in London (6-3, 6-3) so he will be confident of repeating the same feat, only this time the stakes being higher. He will also be looking to be the first Russian after Marat Safin to lift the Australian Open.

Russia's Daniil Medvedev during an interview after winning his semi final match against Greece's Stefanos Tsitsipas   -  REUTERS

 

With both players enjoying a convincing victory in their respective semi-finals, it will be a battle to watch as the ‘Next Gen’ player will look to dethrone the King of Melbourne from his throne.

Head to Head Record

Djokovic marginally leads Medvedev by 4-3 in their head-to-head record. They have only faced each other once in the Australian Open (Round 4 of 2019) where the Serb defeated the Russian.

Road to the final

Novak Djokovic

Round 1: def Jérémy Chardy (6-3, 6-1, 6-2)

Round 2: def Frances Tiafoe (6-3, 6-7, 7-6, 6-3)

Round 3: def Taylor Fritz (7-6, 6-4, 3-6, 4-6, 6-2)

Round 4: def Milos Raonic (7-4, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4)

Quarterfinal: def Alexander Zverev (6-7, 6-2, 6-4, 7-6)

Semifinal: def Aslan Karatsev (6-3, 6-4, 6-2)

 

Daniil Medvedev

Round 1: def Vasek Pospisil (6-2, 6-2, 6-4)

Round 2: def Roberto Carballés Baena (6-2, 7-5, 6-1)

Round 3: def Filip Krajinović (3-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-0)

Round 4: def Mackenzie McDonald (6-4, 6-2, 6-2)

Quarterfinal: def Andrey Rublev (7-5, 6-3, 6-2)

Semifinal: def Stefanos Tsitsipas (6-4, 6-2, 7-5)

 

What time will the final start?

The men’s singles final will begin at 2.00 pm IST

Where will the final take place?

The final will happen at the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.

Where to watch in India?

The final will be telecast on Sony Sports Network. The match will also be live-streamed on the Sony LIV and the Sony LIV website.