There were more tantrums than thrills as Daniil Medvedev crushed Stefanos Tsitsipas in the semifinal of the Australian Open on Friday.
The Russian Medvedev extended his winning streak to 20 matches, as he advanced to the Australian Open final for the first time with a dominant 6-4, 6-2, 7-5 victory.
With Tsitsipas looking gassed from his stunning five-set comeback win against Rafael Nadal two days ago, Medvedev was in cruise control for almost the whole match.
But there were some flashpoints in the match as Medvedev and Tsitsipas, who have a history, clashed at the Rod Laver Arena, where the crowd was heavily in favour of the Greek.
The Russian was 6-4, 2-1 up when Tsitsipas hurled a bottle on court in frustration and caused spillage on the court.
Stefanos Tsitsipas is being steamrolled by Daniil Medvedev and its shows!
6-4 6-2 to the Russian on Rod Laver Arena in the AusOpen semifinals. pic.twitter.com/FTJTDsMQj4
— PTV Sports (@PTVSp0rts) February 19, 2021
James Keothavong, the chair umpire, hurriedly got some ball kids to mop up the court. Keen to see his opponent punished, Medvedev complained to the umpire. “It’s on the court also!” he was heard saying. Though the umpire rebuked Tsitsipas he did not hand him an official warning.
Commentating on Eurosport, former player Frew McMillan said: “I don’t like that attitude, not that I agree with Tsitsipas’s display of temper there. When he was down against Nadal we didn’t see that level of frustration.”
The Russian was also unhappy about Tsitsipas delaying the proceedings on his serve. To make his point, Medvedev, while serving at 3-2 in the third set, pulled out of serve at the last instant and went to towel himself down.
Despite the temper flare-ups from the Russian he played an incredible steady and solid match, landing 46 winners to seal a summit clash with Novak Djokovic.
Medvedev joins 2005 champion Marat Safin and 1999 titlist Yevgeny Kafelnikov as only the third Russian man to reach multiple Grand Slam finals.
“I like that I don’t have a lot of pressure, because he never lost in the eight times that he was here in the final,” said Medvedev of Sunday’s final against eight-time champion Djokovic.
“It is he who has all the pressure, getting to Roger (Federer) and Rafa in the Grand Slam [leaderboard]. I just hope that I am going to get out there and show my best tennis.
“As we have seen, I can beat some big names if I play good so that is the main part. He has more experience, but he has more things to lose than me.”