Daniil Medvedev Loses to Hurkacz in Miami, Fails to Reclaim No 1 Seed
Russian tennis star Daniil Medvedev again lost another opportunity to recapture the men’s singles World No.1 ranking. He succumbs to Polish star Hubert Hurkacz 7-6 (9/7), 6-3 in the quarterfinals of the Miami Open on Friday. Medvedev could have reclaimed the top spot in the Association of Tennis Professionals world rankings. This would have been true if he defeats Hurkacz in the last eight. However, the opposite happened as the Pole took advantage of the Russian’s health issues to win the match.
Quick Miami Open Recap
It could be recalled that Medvedev dropped to second after losing to Gael Monfils at Indian Wells last week. In Miami, he was on pace to reclaim the top spot. This was with straight-set wins over Andy Murray, Pedro Martinez and Jenson Brooksby. But against Hurkacz, the Russian claimed to have difficulty breathing in the match. He suffers from cramps that in the locker room he was like “a fish on a sofa.” Medvedev has trouble with his serves as his first-serve percentage was only 43%. That problem put him in a 2-5 hole but he was able to level the game at five apiece. Hurkacz, however, halted the uprising and settled well in the second set to take the victory. He secures a semifinal clash with Spanish teen sensation Carlos Alcaraz. The Spanish player outclasses Miomir Kecmanovic in three sets, 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 7-6 (7/5).
It seems like Medvedev will need to strengthen his will and his health to move past Novak Djokovic. The Serbian continues to be sidelined due to his coronavirus beliefs and at the top of the men’s singles rankings. The ATP betting odds are likely to favor the Russian in each and every tournament he is listed to participate in due to his high ranking and outstanding play. However, he needs to get that monkey off his back by staying healthy and keeping his composure at an optimal level.
Osaka Beats Bencic to Reach Miami Open Final
On the women’s side, Naomi Osaka edged past Olympic champion Belinda Bencic to secure a spot in the final. Osaka came back from a set down to beat Bencic, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 and secure a finals meeting with new women’s world number one Iga Swiatek. The win moved the Japanese star closer to winning her first title since the 2021 Australian Open. However, Osaka will have her hands full as she will meet in-form Swiatek, who defeated Jessica Pegula in the other semifinal 6-2, 7-5. This will be the second time that Osaka and Swiatek meet as the Japanese won their first encounter in Toronto in 2019.
The women’s final will be highly anticipated by sports oddsmakers as two of the most dominant tennis players in the circuit clash in the winner-take-all duel. Four-time Grand Slam champion Osaka looks to rekindle her form. It will put her back at the top of the women’s tennis rankings. Right now, Swiatek holds the spot who has been consistent this year. Picking the winning player in today’s tennis scene is difficult due to the unpredictability of the competitors. Gone are the times when Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Djokovic are the top favorites to win each ATP tournament and Serena Williams on the distaff side. The current crop has shown they can go side-by-side with the greats and outclass them at any given stage.