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US Open: Novak Djokovic, Daniil Medvedev Advance to Last 16 with Contrasting Wins

US Open 2019: Novak Djokovic crushed Denis Kudla while Dannil Medvedev fought past Feliciano Lopez.

AFP

Updated:August 31, 2019, 10:23 AM IST
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US Open: Novak Djokovic, Daniil Medvedev Advance to Last 16 with Contrasting Wins
Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev won their Round 3 matches. (Photo Credit: Reuters/@usopen)
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New York: Reigning champion Novak Djokovic said he felt "almost pain free" as he strolled into the US Open last 16 on Friday with a 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 victory over Denis Kudla.

Djokovic struggled with a left shoulder injury in Wednesday's second-round win, but the top seed looked far more at ease against 111th-ranked Kudla as he advanced to a showdown with 2016 champion Stan Wawrinka.

"I managed to play almost pain free. That's a big improvement from last match," Djokovic said.

"Obviously I didn't know how my body would react and I'm glad to just finish the match tonight. I'm not going to go into medical details, but it was definitely bothering me the last couple weeks."

"I didn't practice yesterday. I just wanted to give myself time and do everything possible to recover," he added.

Djokovic is attempting to become the first back-to-back men's champion here since Roger Federer won five titles in a row from 2004 to 2008.

He will meet Wawrinka, the man who beat him in the US Open final three years ago, for a place in the last eight.

"We've had some great battles over the years, all over the world and especially here," Djokovic said of his upcoming clash with the Swiss three-time Grand Slam champion.

MEDVEDEV WINS AMID BOOS

Daniil Medvedev stood on the court and told the fans he won because of them.

Judging by the boos, they would have preferred if he'd lost.

The No. 5 seed advanced to the fourth round at the U.S. Open, beating Feliciano Lopez 7-6 (1), 4-6, 7-6 (7), 6-4 before a Louis Armstrong Stadium crowd that turned on the Russian earlier in the match.

The troubles began after he'd snatched the towel from a ballperson in the first set and was given a code violation by umpire Damien Dumusois. Medvedev then threw his racket in the direction of Dumusois, barked something at him and later flashed his middle finger next to his forehead as he walked past the umpire's chair.

That started the booing that Medvedev encouraged after the match, extending his arms and waving the crowd on to let him have it.

They did, and he responded in his post-match interview by saying: "I want all of you to know when you sleep tonight I won because of you."

He added: "The more you do this, the more I will win for you guys."

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