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Published: 09:59, April 01, 2022
Hurkacz stops Medvedev regaining world No 1 spot in Miami
By Reuters
Published:09:59, April 01, 2022 By Reuters

Hubert Hurkacz of Poland salutes fans after winning his men's quarterfinal match against Daniil Medvedev of Russia, at the Miami Open tennis tournament, March 31, 2022, in Miami Gardens, Florida. (REBECCA BLACKWELL / AP)

Poland's Hubert Hurkacz kept his title defense going at the Miami Open by beating Daniil Medvedev 7-6(7) 6-3 in their quarter-final on Thursday as the Russian fell one win short of reclaiming the world No 1 ranking.

Hubert Hurkacz won the first three games and then fended off two break points in the seventh as Daniil Medvedev struggled on his first serve and suffered four double faults in the first set

Hurkacz won the first three games and then fended off two break points in the seventh as Medvedev, who appeared unwell at times in the heat, struggled on his first serve and suffered four double faults in the first set.

The Russian attempted a comeback as he saved two set points to hold serve in the eighth game and broke in the ninth, but the Polish world No 10 kept his nerve in the tiebreak.

In the second set, Hurkacz broke on his sixth attempt in a marathon, 11-minute fifth game as the sweltering temperature seemed to get the better of Medvedev.

Daniil Medvedev of Russia serves in his men's quarterfinal match against Hubert Hurkacz of Poland, at the Miami Open tennis tournament, March 31, 2022, in Miami Gardens, Florida. (REBECCA BLACKWELL / AP)

Sitting on his bench after the seventh game, the US Open champion removed his sweat-drenched shirt and requested assistance from the physio, complaining of dizziness.

"All the match I was not feeling my best," Medvedev explained to reporters. "After the tough points, I felt that my breath was not recovering fast enough."

ALSO READ: Medvedev reaches last 16 in Miami, Osaka into quarters

In the following game, Medvedev hunched over momentarily and later glumly dropped his racket to the court after he whacked a backhand return into the net.

Eighth-seeded Hurkacz's win sets up a meeting with either Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic or Spanish teenage phenomenon Carlos Alcaraz, who reached the US Open quarter-finals last year. The pair meet at Hard Rock Stadium later on Thursday.

"Playing Daniil is always fun but it's super competitive," Hurkacz said in a broadcast interview after the match.

"I was hitting my forehand a little better and I was returning better so that was big for me."

READ MORE: Swiatek marches into Miami semis, Ruud upsets Zverev

Medvedev needed to reach the semi-finals to retake the world No 1 spot from Novak Djokovic. The Australian Open finalist claimed the position briefly earlier this year but lost it after a shock third-round loss at Indian Wells.

"To be honest, I played a lot of matches where I had the pressure, different one, and it's not like something new happened today in terms of like going out on court and feeling crazy tight or something," he said.

"So I don't think that nerves were part of this."


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