Rublev profits from Medvedev meltdown to reach Cincinnati Masters final

Filed on August 22, 2021
Andrey Rublev of Russia celebrates after defeating Daniil Medvedev of Russia 2-6, 6-3, 6-3 during day 7 of the Western & Southern Open in Mason, Ohio. — AFP

Medvedev required three separate medical timeouts during his loss to Rublev

Andrey Rublev won a battle of top 10 Russians on Saturday, overhauling fading Daniil Medvedev 2-6, 6-3, 6-3 to reach the final of the ATP and WTA Cincinnati Masters on Saturday.

World number seven Rublev had never won so much as a set in four previous losses to his compatriot, currently ranked second in the world and the top seed in the prestigious hardcourt tournament that serves as a tuneup for the US Open.

Medvedev, who was seeking a Canada-US Masters double after lifting the title in Toronto at the weekend, required three separate medical timeouts during his loss to Rublev.

He received treatment on his left hand after he hit an on-court camera during a rally and also had treatment on his right forearm and right thigh during a match played in oppressive 31-degree (C) heat.

Rublev re-adjusted after losing the opening set, hung on during his opponent’s injury dramas and heated discussion with the umpire on camera placement and finally got his chances in the concluding set after two and a quarter hours.

He’ll play for the title against the winner of Saturday’s second semi-final between second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas and third-seeded Olympic champion Alexander Zverev.

“I don’t know how I turned it around,” Rublev said. “Every point was so tight, the match was so intense — it was exactly like a chess game.”

Rublev said he needed to choose his moments as he closed in on success.

“He won’t ever give you a chance so I had to find the right time to make him run. “This win will give me confidence, knowing that I can compete against him, but I still have many things to improve.”

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