2022 Disappointment Can Drive Daniil Medvedev 

2022 Disappointment Can Drive Daniil Medvedev 

After a 2021 season of progress for Daniil Medvedev in Grand Slam events, this year seems to have been one of the missed opportunities for the Russian.

The 26-year-old would admit that despite reaching the top of the world rankings this year, he’s not the finished article and he’ll be eager to learn from the setbacks of the year going forward.

A Promising Start

After reaching the final of the Australian Open at the start of the year, there were high hopes Medvedev could land what would have been his second Grand Slam title of his career. The Moscow star, who is +230 in the tennis betting to win the 2023 Australian Open, just came up short against Rafael Nadal. The defeat to the Spaniard Nadal, who continues to be a serious contender in tennis predictions for the Grand Slams, meant that it was back-to-back Aussie Open final defeats for Medvedev.

A loss to Novak Djokovic was a tough defeat to take 12 months previous for Medvedev; who might wonder if he can ever claim the title in Melbourne. British star Andy Murray, who managed to earn three Grand Slam titles in his career; reached five Australian Open finals but was never the winning player.

Medvedev would have been hoping to build on that final appearance in Melbourne when he took to the French Open. However, a straight-set defeat to the Croatian Marin Čilić saw his hopes of a title in Paris dashed in the fourth round. After missing out on Wimbledon, Medvedev was building towards the defense of his US Open crown; but that too was to end in disappointment.

Back To The Drawing Board

Despite a thrilling contest, Medvedev’s 2022 US Open was to be cut short in the last 16 after a 7-6 (13-11) 3-6 6-3 6-2 defeat to Nick Kyrgios at Flushing Meadows. The result not only meant Medvedev could not make it back-to-back titles in New York City; but also meant he would lose his position at the top of the world rankings.

Medvedev would have been fully aware of Kyrgios’ recent rise in the game, especially after the 27-year-old Australian reached the final of Wimbledon this year before being defeated by Djokovic at The All-England Club. A loss to Kyrgios is certainly no disgrace, but Medvedev would have hoped his qualities on the hardcourts at Flushing Meadows would have seen him at least make a return to the final. There is no doubting Medvedev’s talents and there are promising signs he can add to his single Grand Slam title in the future.

Djokovic Remains An Obstacle

If Medvedev secures Grand Slam glory in 2023; then most likely he will have to find a way of overcoming former world number one Djokovic. This year has been a tough one for Medvedev and it will intrigue to see what kind of response he can produce for the Grand Slam events in 2023. In his first 10 meetings with Djokovic, it’s the Serbian star who just edges the head-to-head record with six wins.

Medvedev’s most famous win was in the 2021 US Open final against Djokovic; in a performance that established the Russian as one of the real forces in the men’s game. Leading into the US Open, the pair had not yet met in 2022, with their last meeting coming in the 2021 ATP Masters 1000 Paris. It was Djokovic who managed to win that encounter, coming from behind to claim a 4-6 6-3 6-3 victory.

If Djokovic does feature at the Australian Open at the start of next year; the 35-year-old will be the man to beat for the first Grand Slam of the year. The Belgrade player has an outstanding record in Melbourne, winning the major tournament on nine previous occasions. Medvedev will be driven by his previous Aussie Open final failures; but whether that would be enough to overcome the talented Djokovic remains to be seen.

The Serb has forged a career on being strong on all surfaces and if the pair do meet at the French Open, Wimbledon; or the US Open next year, Medvedev will hope what he’s learned this year stands him in good stead.

Future Uncertain For Nadal

Medvedev is also likely to be challenged by Nadal but that is only if the Spaniard can continue to manage his ongoing injury problems. The 36-year-old has been dealing with an ongoing foot problem and at times has questioned publicly how long he will continue playing at the highest level. Grand Slam wins at both the Australian Open and French Open this year showed that managed correctly; Nadal can still compete with the best despite the hindrance of his foot problem.

Approaching the end of his stellar career, it can only be a matter of time until Nadal calls it a day. Perhaps the Mallorcan superstar will try to compete for one more season; especially as he still competes at the business end of Grand Slam events and even winning them. Likewise, Djokovic is heading towards the inevitable conclusion of his career; but still, he finds himself dominating many of the next generation of players.

Medvedev Challenging For Dominance

Tennis has enjoyed one of the best generations of players to ever play the game; with the likes of Roger Federer, Djokovic, and Nadal all competing at the same time. Three incredible players who will go down as legends in the sport’s history; their time of dominance is approaching a conclusion.

All eyes are on what the next group of players can bring to the table and who will emerge as the top contenders for Grand Slam titles in the future. Along with the likes of Kyrgios and Alexander Zverev, Medvedev finds himself in the group of contenders to fill the void left by Federer, Djokovic, and Nadal.

2023 could prove to be a defining year and Medvedev will hope some disappointments from this year drive him to greater things.

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