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Medvedev closes in on guaranteed top spot — RT Sport News

Daniil Medvedev needs one more win to ensure he enters his US Open title defense later this month as world number one, after the Russian defeated Dutch rival Botic van de Zandschulp during their second-round encounter at the Cincinnati Masters on Tuesday.

Medvedev emerged from a tricky test to win 6-4, 7-5 in the hard-court showpiece, also known as the Western and Southern Open.

The second set in particular was a challenge for Medvedev, who described it as “not so clean” as he was forced to save a set point on his serve before seeing the game.

“The first game is tricky and I’m happy that I managed to get there, and I hope I will increase my level in the next games.” said Medvedev, who earned a first-round bye.

The 26-year-old Russian knows a run to the quarter-finals in Cincinnati will ensure he heads into the US Open at the end of August with his world number one rating intact.

Medvedev is currently enjoying a 13th week overall atop the ATP charts – a record stretch for any Russian male tennis professional.

If he falls at the next hurdle in Ohio, however, the door will be open for current world number three Rafael Nadal to overtake him if the 22-time Spanish Grand Slam champion goes all the way to win the title. .

After skipping the Canadian Open with lingering injury issues, Nadal begins his campaign in Cincinnati on Wednesday against Croatian Borna Coric.

Medvedev next faces the winner of the encounter between Canadian Denis Shapovalov and American Tommy Paul, with a potential quarter-final clash with Nick Kyrgios looming.

Medvedev stunned by burning Kyrgios

The in-form Kyrgios beat Medvedev in straight sets last week in Canada, after the Russian returned to action with a title victory at the Los Cabos Open in Mexico.

Montreal’s encounter with Kyrgios was followed by a nasty incident as Medvedev clashed with an abusive fan, although there were more savory scenes in Cincinnati as Medvedev received praise for signing autographs all around from the field after his victory, despite the fact that the clock was already ticking towards 10:30. p.m. local time.

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