This Mutua Madrid Open promised unpredictability, and Cristian Garín delivered it today in the Arantxa Sánchez Stadium. In 2 hours and 29 minutes, the Chilean beat Daniil Medvedev 6-4, 6-7(2), 6-1 to earn himself a place in the quarters of the Madrid tournament. Garín, who said before the clash that he felt ready to face the No. 3 in the ATP Ranking, spoke in his press conference about the happiness at being one of the tournament’s surprise packages: “It’s very important to have won today playing in Madrid for the first time”.
The first set went to the young Chilean. Garín, recent champion of the ATP 250 in Chile, showed the Russian player why clay is his favourite surface. Medvedev was unable to recover the break he conceded on his second service game of the match and the world No. 25 took the lead with some solid serving. Just as he did in his opener against Alejandro Davidovich, the tournament’s second seed would have to come back from a set down to progress to the next round.
But the world number 3 was not about to give up, finding some of his best tennis to level the match. In the second “very tight” set, as Garín described it in the press conference following the match, the Moscow native eventually cruised through the tiebreak. Medvedev, who was playing in his first clay tournament since September 2020, continues to improve match by match as he bids to find his A-game on the clay swing.
The final set in the Arantxa Sánchez Stadium would provide the completion of the upset. Cristian Garín, in his second match against Daniil Medvedev -the two players squared off for the first time in the Masters 1000 in Canada, with victory going to the Russian-, sent the world No. 3 home from Mutua Madrid Open to progress to the next round, winning the third set convincingly. In the words of the match winner “these matches are the ones that give you a lot of experience and tell you what you need to improve”. The result means the Chilean has equalled his best performance at a Masters 1000 by reaching the quarter-finals.
“I’m going to do everything I can to never drop below this level”, the Santiago native told the media after the match. To do that, Garín will have to continue taking on and beating opponents of the quality of Daniil Medvedev. Having sealed his victory in the Caja Mágica, the No. 25 was keen to praise his opponent: “He’s a great competitor”. Likewise, asked about the Russian’s difficulty adapting to clay, Garín said that “even though it was a little noticeable, he’s still an extremely tough player to beat”.