Wed, 02 Dec 2020

Djokovic reaches ATP Finals semis for ninth time

Field Level Media
21 Nov 2020, 10:19 GMT+10

Top-seeded Novak Djokovic dispatched of fifth-seeded Alexander Zverev 6-3, 7-6 (4) on Friday to advance to the semifinals of the Nitto ATP Finals at London.

The semifinal appearance will be Djokovic's ninth at the ATP Finals. He will face third-seeded Dominic Thiem of Austria on Saturday at the O2 Arena.

Second-seeded Rafael Nadal of Spain will face fourth-seeded Daniil Medvedev of Russia in the other semi. Medvedev completed a 3-0 mark in Group Tokyo 1970 play with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Argentina's Diego Schwartzman on Friday.

Djokovic went 2-1 in Group Tokyo 1970 play to finish second in the group behind Medvedev. He needs two victories to equal Roger Federer's record of six titles at the event.

Djokovic posted 18 winners against 13 unforced errors on Friday. Zverev had 38 winners and 19 unforced errors and held a 12-3 edge in aces.

"Sascha, I have tremendous respect for him," said Djokovic, referencing Zverev's nickname. "He's a great player, huge serve. Obviously not easy to return the 140 miles-per-hour first serves. Sometimes just have to pick your side, block, hope you can be in the exchanges in the rallies from the back of the court.

"It was really anybody's game, I think, for most of the match. In the tie-break I just read his approach, and served well when I needed to to close out the match."

The loss eliminated Zverev, who went 1-2 in the event. He also had mixed feelings about his overall season.

"It was a great year. Unfortunately, I lost a lot of big matches," Zverev said, citing close calls in the Australian and U.S. Opens. "I lost in the semifinals in Australia, which I could have won. I lost the final of the U.S. Open which I should have won, kind of. (I lost the) final in Paris-Bercy. This match here.

"A lot of tough matches, a lot of tough moments, but a good year for me. A lot to build on for next year."

Medvedev had 30 winners against 19 unforced errors as he cruised past the eighth-seeded Schwartzman, who went 0-3 in group play.

As for Medvedev, the 3-0 mark certainly rates superior to his 0-3 record in London last season.

"I was playing great in the two previous matches. I think it is always good to stay undefeated for the confidence," Medvedev said. "I wanted to win the match, so I am really happy that I have done it.

"I was serving really good today, so that helped me a lot throughout all the match."

Medvedev had just four aces but converted 87.5 percent of his first serves (35 of 40).

Schwartzman converted just 63.9 percent of his first serves (23 of 36). He recorded 13 winners and committed eight unforced errors.

--Field Level Media

More Argentina News

Access More

Sign up for Buenos Aires News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!