Nadal defeats Medvedev in two sets at Acapulco

Acapulco, Mexico (AP) —There was no drama this time.

In a spectacular five-set Australian Open final rematch, Rafael Nadal defeated Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 6-3 early Saturday to compete in the Mexican Open final against Cameron Norrie.

A month ago in Australia, 35-year-old Nadal came from two sets to defeat Medvedev and win his record 21st Grand Slam singles title.

“Each match is different. Yesterday I said the conditions were different and everything would change,” Nadal said. “It was another game, a very exciting second (set) that made few mistakes.”

Nadal will try to win his fourth title at fan favorite Acapulco after winning the 2005, 2013 and 2020 titles this season 14-0.

“It’s been a long time since what happened in Australia this week, but I’ve been able to stay focused. That’s fine mentally. It’s important because tomorrow will be a tough final.” Nadal said.

“It was a long career with more success than I could have imagined. Playing here is a gift I cherish and appreciate. I am grateful for these opportunities.”

The Spaniards made a strong start in the match with a break in the fourth game of the first set, which lasted 47 minutes.

Medvedev, the world’s number one player on Monday, played better in the second set, but missed a conversion of 11 breakpoints, seven of which were in the fifth game, which lasted 19 minutes.

“I don’t think I played great today. The entire level of the match wasn’t enough to play against a player like Rafa,” Medvedev said.

“There’s nothing I can do from now on. To be honest, I need to change everything I did today. I feel like I was running out of energy today.”

Earlier, Norrie extended his hot streak in February by upsetting Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4, 6-4.

After losing all four games in January, Norrie arrived in Mexico after winning his third ATP tour title in his career at Delray Beach at 10-1 in February.

Norrie, Acapulco’s sixth-seeded player, defeated fourth-placed Tsitsipas to rival his career’s biggest win.

“It helped me a lot today. I really enjoyed the match. This is one of my best wins. I hope I can continue to run tomorrow,” Norrie said.

Norrie interrupted service in the 9th game of the 1st and 2nd sets to defeat Tsitsipas.

Norrie’s biggest career win to date was to defeat Dominic Thiem, who was fourth in the ATP rankings in the 2021 Lyon semi-finals.


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