The best seeds Novak Djokovic and Ashleigh Barty fell in the semifinals of Cincinnati
CINCINNATI: world number one Novak Djokovic withered under pressure of Daniil Medvedev on Saturday, falling 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 before the ninth Russian sown in the Cincinnati Masters semifinals
Medvedev's surprise victory sent him to a title match with another unexpected finalist, the sixteenth-seeded Belgian David Goffin, who defeated Frenchman Richard Gasquet 6-3, 6-4 to reach his first ATP Masters 1000 final.
A furious Djokovic, who seemed to have control of the competition at first, was surprised when Medvedev stepped up things in the second set.
I don't know how I turned it around, I was so tired after the first set and I thought I couldn't keep up the intensity, said Medvedev, who has competed in 15 hard court games since July 30. .
But I had a boost opportunity in the second set and the crowd gave me energy, added the Russian, who will play his second Masters series final in eight days, after falling to Rafael Nadal in Montreal last Sunday.
Novak had been destroying me in the second service, so I did it, said Medvedev. It is a great feeling to win and beat number one.
Djokovic, the defending champion who played his first tournament since his Wimbledon victory in July, needs time to calm down before reflecting on his defeat.
It deserves to be in the mix, certainly, with all its results, Djokovic said. He is working to reach the top 5. He is definitely one of the best players in the world at the moment.
Djokovic said there was little he could deal with the broken style of Medvedev.
When I had my racket on the ball, I was also returning his services, but you really can't predict someone or prepare for someone who serves that great second service consistently from 4-3 until the end of the game, making maybe two doubles. God's faults knows how many you take out, he said.
With the US Open starting August 26, Djokovic said he took mostly positive of the week.
Today I lost a tennis match, but I didn't do too badly, he said. So I will take that and move to New York and have a good week of practice.
I will fight for a title like everyone else, and I like my possibilities.
Medvedev won 12 of the last 14 points in the second set to match the game against Djokovic, then gained a 3-1 lead in the third on the way to victory in his first match point.
There was also an upset in the women's draw, since the Russian veteran Svetlana Kuznetsova defeated Australian seeded Ashleigh barty 6-2, 6-4.
Kuznetsova, a two-time Grand Slam champion who has been hampered lately by an injury, will look for his 19th WTA title, and the first in more than a year, when he faces American Madison Keys in the final. Keys, the US Open finalist UU. In 2017, he defeated fellow countryman Sofia Kenin 7-5, 6-4.
Kuznetsova denied Barty the opportunity to claim the world's number one ranking, which the Australian would have done when he reached the final.
Instead, the triumph of Kuznetsova, 34, leaves Naomi Osaka injured at the top of the ranking with the impending US Open.
Barty, who had recovered from a set in each of his two previous games, also said he was taking Flushing Meadows positives of the week.
This was a week I fought, Barty said. Sometimes I played some good things. Sometimes I played some pretty horrible things.
I learned a lot from this week, and there is nothing more positive in New York, he said.
Keys reserved his place in the final when he won a fully American game plagued with 12 service breaks.
She earned match points with a flick volley winner angled steeply cross-court and amazed herself with the get. "I looked at my box in shock," she admitted. "I'm really feeling great about my tennis .