SHANGHAI (AFP) – Daniil Medvedev won his fourth title of a spectacular year with a thumping 6-4, 6-1 victory over Alexander Zverev in the Shanghai Masters final yesterday.
Victory for the 23-year-old Russian, contesting a sixth final in a row, was more evidence that he is the prime contender to join the ‘Big Three’ of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.
The US Open finalist is also able to say that he has finally beaten the German Zverev, another young contender at 22, at the fifth attempt.
This was an emphatic statement from the world number four, needing just 74 minutes to seal the win.
Medvedev made a fast start, winning his service game and then breaking Zverev’s for an early 2-0 lead.
Under a closed stadium roof because of rain in Shanghai, Zverev was suffocating, down 3-0 after 11 minutes.
But the sixth-ranked German sent down an ace to finally get a foothold in the match and then broke back for 3-2.
The duo went with serve until Zverev conceded the set with two calamitous double faults on the trot, the last of which he transpired to gift with a horribly mis-hit second serve that drew a few giggles from the crowd.
The second set began in the same way as the first – Medvedev breaking Zverev’s first service game for a prompt 2-0 lead.
He then broke once more in the fourth for a dominant victory, and sealed the title with an ace – and the most subtle of smiles.