Daniil Medvedev played for his second consecutive Major title in Melbourne in January. The US Open winner built a massive 6-2, 7-6, 3-2, 40-0 advantage against Rafael Nadal and put one hand on the trophy. However, Nadal performed one of his greatest comebacks and scored a 2-6, 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 7-5 victory in five hours and 24 minutes.
It was a massive blow for Daniil, who claimed only two smaller titles in the rest of the season and struggled against the top-10 opponents. Speaking about this tough loss, Medvedev could not say whether it affected his season or not.
Also, he did not mark that third set’s sixth game as the main reason for his defeat, praising Nadal and his game in the rest of the clash. Rafa did not play well in the opener in Melbourne, struggling and failing to serve out for the second set.
Medvedev grabbed it in the tie break and found himself miles in front before set number three.
Daniil Medvedev lost an epic Australian Open final to Rafael Nadal.
The Spaniard faced those three break points in the third set’s sixth game, and it would have been over for him had he lost any of those points.
In a manner of a true champion, Nadal survived and claimed a break in game nine to steal the set and improve his chances. Things became serious when Rafa broke twice in the fourth set and forced a decider, recovering and fighting like a lion.
The Spaniard opened a 5-3 lead in the final set before the Russian made one last push and broke back for 5-5. Nadal started all over, broke again in game 11 and sealed the deal on his serve to celebrate the first Australian Open crown in 13 years.
“I do not know how much this defeat has affected me, and if it still affects me, I have no idea. I left it far behind a long time ago, but who knows? Maybe it’s still there, deep inside me. It’s the kind of game I do not remake because Rafa played too well.
He was solid, getting stronger as the game went on. Yes, I had that situation at 0-40, but that’s not where I lost the final. So tennis-wise, I was not disappointed. However, it’s still a final defeat after leading two sets to love, and it was not easy to digest,” Daniil Medvedev said.