Tennis

ATP Cup | Daniil Medvedev blunts Isner’s serve

Russia’s Karen Khachanov in action against Taylor Fritz of the U.S.

Russia’s Karen Khachanov in action against Taylor Fritz of the U.S.   | Photo Credit: REUTERS

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Ruud claims another big scalp

World number five Daniil Medvedev blunted big-serving John Isner in an almost flawless straight sets victory at the ATP Cup on Sunday.

The US Open finalist hit 24 winners and made just two unforced errors in the 6-3, 6-1 rout in one hour to ensure Russia clinched the tie against the United States ahead of the doubles.

Unbeaten Russia is top of Group D, while winless United States is all but out of contention for the knockout stages in Sydney.

Earlier, emerging 21-year-old Casper Ruud continued his giant-killing run with a 6-2, 6-2 victory over world number 12 Fabio Fognini on Sunday, before Italy recovered to down Norway.

Ruud levelled the Group D tie in Perth in just 66 minutes and then backed up alongside Viktor Durasovic in the deciding doubles only to be thwarted by Fognini and Simone Bolelli, who prevailed 6-3, 7-6(3).

Italy joins surprise packet Norway with a 1-1 record so far after being swept by Russia in its opening tie on Friday.

Ruud, whose father Christian is Norway’s captain, has led his team’s surprising run, starting the season spectacularly after upsetting not only Fognini but big-serving American John Isner in his first wins over top-20 players.

Great for confidence

“I’m very happy to beat my highest ranked player ever,” he said of Fognini.

“Coming out here and beating two top 20 players at the beginning of the year is great for my confidence.”

The world number 54 was in imperious form with an array of pinpoint shots on the baseline rattling a frustrated Fognini, who badly miscued several forehands.

Ruud broke twice to draw first blood and his accurate serving gave little chance of inroads for the Italian. He broke in the sixth game of the second set to grab a stranglehold en route to his second straight upset.

In the earlier singles match, Stefano Travaglia notched his first win of the season after comfortably beating Durasovic 6-1, 6-1 in 56 minutes.

Misfiring

The world number 84 took advantage of a misfiring Durasovic, who had 16 unforced errors in a horror first set. The one-sided contest continued with Travaglia giving Italy its first taste of victory.

The 28-year-old is representing Italy for the first time after replacing world number eight Matteo Berrettini, who withdrew from the tournament with an abdominal injury.

“It’s very important for me to play for Italy,” Travaglia said. “I tried to play every point at my best and I think I did it.”

Durasovic, ranked 332, has not won a set from two matches after winning just four games against American Taylor Fritz in his opener.

The results: In Sydney: Group C: Bulgaria 2 beat Moldova 1 {Dimitar Kuzmanov bt Alexander Cozbinov 6-1, 7-5; Grigor Dimitrov bt Radu Albot 6-2, 6-3; Dimitrov & Alexandar Lazarov lost to Albot & Cozbinov 6-4, 7-6(4)}.

Britain 2 beat Belgium 1 {Cameron Norrie lost to Steve Darcis 6-2, 6-4; Dan Evans bt David Goffin 6-4, 6-4; Jamie Murray & Joe Salisbury bt Sander Gille & Joran Vliegen 6-3, 7-6(7)}

In Brisbane: Group F: Australia 3 beat Canada 0 {Alex de Minaur bt Denis Shapovalov 6-7(6), 6-4, 6-2; John Millman bt Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-4, 6-2; Chris Guccione & John Peers bt Auger-Aliassime & Adil Shamasdin 3-6, 7-6(3), [10-8]}

Germany 2 beat Greece 1 {Jan-Lennard Struff bt Michail Pervolarakis 6-4, 6-1; Alexander Zverev lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-1, 6-4; Kevin Krawietz & Andreas Mies bt Tsitsipas & Pervolarakis 3-6, 6-3, [17-15]}.

In Perth: Group D: Italy 2 beat Norway 1 {Stefano Travaglia bt Viktor Durasovic 6-1, 6-1; Fabio Fognini lost to Casper Ruud 6-2, 6-2; Fognini & Simone Bolelli bt Ruud & Durasovic 6-3, 7-6(3)}.

Russia 2 beat United States 1 {Karen Khachanov bt Taylor Fritz 3-6, 7-5, 6-1; Danlil Medvedev bt John Isner 6-3, 6-1; Khachanov & Medvedev lost to Austin Krajicek & Rajeem Rav 6-3, 6-4.}

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 3:30:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/tennis/atp-cup-daniil-medvedev-blunts-isners-serve/article30487814.ece

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