“Deprived Me of Time”: Daniil Medvedev Reveals the Differences in Playing Against Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal

Published 02/22/2021, 12:52 PM EST
Tennis – Australian Open – Men’s Singles Final – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, Serbia’s Novak Djokovic shakes hands with Russia’s Daniil Medvedev after their final match REUTERS/Asanka Brendon Ratnayake


World No.1 Novak Djokovic emerged as the winner of the Australian Open 2021. Although Daniil Medvedev was on a 20-match winning streak before the finals, he stood nowhere near the mighty Djokovic. The Russian player lost the match in straight sets and was quite disappointed with his performance. The final scoreline of the match was 7-5, 6-2, 6-2.

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It was Daniil Medvedev’s second Grand Slam final. Before this, he faced Rafael Nadal in the finals of the US Open 2019 and gave some tough competition to him. He lost in the last set, contrary to what happened to him at the Australian Open 2021 final against Novak Djokovic.

In a recent interview, Medvedev revealed what was the difference between the two Grand Slam finals. He also highlighted the difference in the kind of play between Rafa and Djoker.

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Daniil Medvedev of Russia and Rafael Nadal of Spain stand together before their Men’s Singles final match. Day fourteen of the 2019 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 08, 2019, in the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

“Rafa gives you more time to think on the court. He’s amazing in defense and with his forehand. You think you’ve won the point and you get mad. But at least you have time to think, to adapt. Against Novak, I wanted to do different things, but he deprived me of time for that, he took the advantage in everything, very quickly,” said Medvedev.

Medvedev certainly believes that Nadal gives at least some time to his opponents to think. However, he feels that the same is not true for Djokovic as he reacts in a flash and doesn’t give much time to his opponents.

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Daniil Medvedev says that he’ll do things differently if he meets Novak Djokovic again in a Grand Slam final

The new World No.3 player also reflected that he had learned a lot from the US Open 2019 final. He said that he would try to use the experience of this final when he would face Djokovic in a major’s final ever again.

Tennis – Australian Open – Men’s Singles Final – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 21, 2021, Serbia’s Novak Djokovic with Russia’s Daniil Medvedev after their final match REUTERS/Jaimi Joy

“I get closer because I gain experience each time, and that is the key. If I play Novak again here in the final, I will do things differently, on and off the court, because I will remember that deadly defeat: It doesn’t mean that I will necessarily win, but that’s the life of a tennis player,” added the Russian player.

Even though Medvedev lost in the finals, he has shown the tennis world what he’s capable of. He’ll certainly like to go ahead from here and win his maiden Grand Slam title soon.

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On the other hand, Novak Djokovic has got off to a great start in the 2021 season. The Serbian legend won his 18th Grand Slam title and is now just two titles away from Roger Federer’s and Rafa’s Grand Slam tally. Will Djokovic be able to win his 20th Grand Slam Slam title in 2021 only?

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Anshul Singh

957 articles

Anshul Singh is a tennis author at EssentiallySports, currently pursuing Journalism Honors from Delhi University. Having significant experience with content, Anshul has authored over 500 tennis articles. He has previously worked as a writer and an editor for DU Express, penning riveting articles on sports, politics, and culture.

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