French Open: Daniil Medvedev says Alex de Minaur can beat anyone

Reigning Grand Slam winner Daniil Medvedev says Alex de Minaur “can beat anyone” on current form, and Novak Djokovic’s potential withdrawal could potentially open the door for the Australian star to make it to the 20-year-old French Open.

After losing three of the last four sets to de Minaur at Roland Garros and rejecting a blister on his foot as an excuse, Medvedev, a six-time Grand Slam finalist, said his Australian opponent had shown skills he had not seen in his previous matches. meetings.

The victory lifted de Minaur to eighth in the live rankings and set up a quarter-final showdown with Germany’s Alexander Zverev, who beat Holger Rune in five sets.

World number one Djokovic could be de Minaur’s semi-final opponent but revealed he could pull out of his quarter-final clash against Casper Ruud after aggravating an existing knee injury.

Medvedev, who has already become the first Australian to reach the last 16 of the French Open since former world number one Lleyton Hewitt in 2004, said the Austrian had shown enough to suggest he too could make his mark in Paris .

“Because today he played probably the best match we’ve played,” said Medvedev, who lost to de Minaur for the third time in their first meeting on clay.

“I’ve been watching his clay matches this year to see what tactics to play… but I haven’t seen him play like that.

“I mean, his serve today was serving better than most of the guys I’ve played with on clay, so that was surprising.

“Today he improved a lot in every way. Then it gets to the point where we know Alex can beat anybody – I think he’s already beaten Novak (Đoković), everybody, Rafa on sand.

“But then it’s a question of whether you’re willing to do it week in and week out and become the No. 1 in the world, two in the world, three in the world.

“He’s close there, so he’s a top player, but then it’s a question of what he does in the quarters. If he plays the way he played today, we’ll see.”

While he saw great progress from de Minaur, Medvedev wasn’t convinced the Australian would lift the trophy.

“The predictions are a little disrespectful because when you tell somebody, it’s like you’re underestimating the other guys a little bit,” Medvedev said.

“At this moment, when I see Novak (Đoković) struggling with his foot, I would say Carlos (Alcaraz) or Jannik (Sinner) because they are both playing well.

“They both have slams, they have experience. They are among the first two, three in the world, so my opinion, Carlos or Jannik – but let’s see.”

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