NEW YORK (Reuters) – Russian third seed Daniil Medvedev faced little resistance from Federico Delbonis of Argentina in a 6-1 6-2 6-4 win on Tuesday to ease into the second round of the U.S. Open.
The 24-year-old Medvedev, who lost to Rafa Nadal in last year’s final, faced just two breakpoints in the entire match — in his first service game of the second set — while breaking his opponent on five occasions.
“The most pleased I was (with) today was the score … three sets, important first round, especially playing so late… I think it’s 11.20 right now, so happy that I finished before midnight,” Medvedev said in a courtside interview.
“I was playing consistent, that’s important. Didn’t go for crazy shots, it was a good day.”
Medvedev barely needed to shift gears as he hit 27 winners while keeping his unforced errors down to 24, finishing the match off under two hours.
The Russian sealed victory when his 79th-ranked opponent sent a return into the net in the final match of the evening on Arthur Ashe Stadium court.
In the first meeting between the two players, Medvedev came under little pressure and went for an array of strokes, including many failed drop shot attempts and a no-look backhand winner from the net.
“Actually it was more easy in the beginning. Later he came back a little bit into the match,” Medvedev said. “He started to be a little bit tricky, had some breakpoints but I managed to keep the distance all the time.
“In the third set, I think actually the game I lost for 5-3 in the third, was the only game he won by love. I always kept pressure on his serve and that was the key.”
In the second round Medvedev will meet Australian Christopher O’Connell, who earlier defeated Laslo Djere of Serbia 4-6 6-4 7-6(2) 6-4.
(Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; editing by Peter Rutherford)