Europe 1 with AFP / Photo credit: JULIAN FINNEY / GETTY IMAGES EUROPE / Getty Images via AFP 19:05 p.m., May 30, 2023Stupor at Roland-Garros! Daniil Medvedev, world number 2, was beaten as soon as he entered the competition at Roland-Garros. The Russian was beaten by the inexperienced Brazilian Thiago Seyboth Wild, only 172nd in the ATP rankings and coming from qualifying.
Daniil Medvedev, 2nd in the world and considered one of the main outsiders at Roland-Garros, was eliminated Tuesday in the first round of the Major on clay by the Brazilian Thiago Seyboth Wild (172nd and from qualifying) 7-6 (7/5), 6-7 (6/8), 2-6, 6-3, 6-4. "I've always dreamed of playing on this court against these kinds of players. Beating him here is a dream come true," Seyboth Wild told the Philippe-Chatrier court crowd.
"I wanted to find angles and engage him in a forehand battle. It didn't work badly," added the 23-year-old Brazilian who looked like Roger Federer who sometimes managed to recall the master in the game with some brilliant shots. "Physically, it's been hard," he agreed, admitting to suffering from cramps. "But mentally, I kept trying to play my best tennis and it worked," he added.
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The Russian had seemed to take a liking to clay, a surface he had hated until then, by winning the Masters 1000 in Rome just before coming to Paris. He had thus become one of the main potential threats for the favorites Carlos Alcaraz (number 1) and Novak Djokovic (3rd) in the absence of Rafael Nadal. In addition, he came to Roland Garros with the record of titles (5), finals (6) and matches won (39) since the beginning of the season.
But it is Seyboth Wild, who is playing for the second time in the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament after losing in the first round of the US Open 2020, who will face the Frenchman Quentin Halys (88th) or the Argentine Guido Pella (423rd) for a place in the third round.
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"You work hard"
He will have a rest day to rest from this duel of 4:15 but his coach will "put him back on the court tomorrow (Wednesday)", he predicted. "It's tennis: you work hard and you get rewarded," he said. After a long fight in the first set, the Brazilian took the lead. The Russian hung on and in the second set, Seyboth-Wild again got two set balls at 6/4 in the tie break. But this time, Medvedev scored four points in a row with a completely missed smash from his opponent to get back to a set all over.
The Russian was not troubled in the third set, despite a medical timeout at 5-2 to stop a nosebleed. After three hours of play, both players were only at the very beginning of the fourth set. On a disastrous service game (three double faults including one on the break ball and a direct foul in six points) Medvedev allowed his opponent to break away 2-0 and then 3-0. He then came back to 3-2 but immediately lost his service game, allowing Seyboth Wild to start the match in a fifth set.
Breaks and breaks multiplied in the decisive set, until Seyboth Wild broke away 5-3. He then served for the match at 5-4 and got his best win on his first match ball.