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Champion Medvedev reacts to US Open clearance

The world number one is looking forward to his return at Flushing Meadows

World number one Daniil Medvedev is gearing up for a defense of his US Open title after it was confirmed that players from Russia and Belarus will be permitted to compete at the Grand Slam event at Flushing Meadows later this year.

The Russian star, who recently leapfrogged Novak Djokovic again to the summit of the men’s rankings, will be barred from competing at Wimbledon in late June after the All England Club acted against players from Russia and Belarus following the onset of the military operation in Ukraine. 

But the stance taken by Wimbledon chiefs won’t be repeated in the US in late August after it was confirmed on Tuesday that the doors will be open for Medvedev and Belarusian players such as Aryna Sabalenka – a decision which Medvedev hailed as a welcome gesture of inclusivity.

“It’s great news,” said Medvedev, who was speaking after his straight sets win against David Goffin at the Halle Open in Germany on Wednesday which advanced him to the round of 16.

 I’ve always said I will follow the rules and play where I can play. I just want to show my best tennis.

“I’m happy to be able to defend my title. I have some amazing memories from last year.

“That was one of the most special tournaments for me.”

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Russia’s Daniil Medvedev won last year’s men’s title in New York. © Matthew Stockman / Getty Images
US Open announces decision on Russian players

Medvedev, along with Sabalenka and other players from Russia and Belarus, will be compelled to compete in the US under a neutral flag and without their national anthems. 

But Medvedev added that a silver lining to his Wimbledon ban is that he will be extra-prepared for the final Grand Slam event of the year in the US.

“Without Wimbledon coming up, I don’t have to preserve my body and I can play three tournaments in a row,” he said.

“I’ll then spend a few more days in Mallorca and then return to the south of France to train for the hard courts.

“I may add another tournament to my list, but I’m not sure yet.”

Medvedev, who has never advanced past the fourth round at Wimbledon, also admitted that grass isn’t an optimal surface for him and now that he has accepted he isn’t invited to play in the UK, it leaves him ample time to prepare for a repeat of his US Open win in 2021.

“Grass is physically a very tough surface,” he explained. Wimbledon is always in the back of your mind. Right now, it’s easier for me to have just this tournament that matters.” 

Medvedev defeated Novak Djokovic in straight sets in last year’s US Open final to claim his first-ever Grand Slam title. 

The US Open is set to begin on August 29. 

READ MORE: Medvedev breaks Russian money record

https://ift.tt/ZEB8Log 15, 2022 at 09:37PM
from RT – Daily news

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