TennisSection previews the 2022 Cincinnati Masters as Daniil Medvedev takes on Denis Shapovalov in the third round on Thursday, August 18th, 2022.
With two major big names out of the way in his section of the draw, Daniil Medvedev looks nailed on to make the final this weekend. But the Russian World No. 1 will need to overcome a resurgent Denis Shapovalov in a mouthwatering third-round encounter at the Cincinnati Masters. Who will prevail?
Daniil Medvedev was given a hard time by Botic van de Zandschulp again, but passed the test with flying colours. The Russian came through a tight encounter 6-4 7-5 under the lights to advance into the third round of the Cinninati Masters for the third straight year. The 2019 champion made quickfire start, breaking the Dutchman early on and consolidating to take the first set 6-4. But the second set was extremely wild, with Medvedev being forced to save a set point on serve after relinquishing a break advantage. But van de Zandschulp paid a hefty price for spurning his missed opportunity as the top seed dug deep to win two successive games from 5-5.
Denis Shapovalov, for his part, is enjoying his most productive run since May. The Canadian lefty came from behind to secure an unlikely win over an in-form Tommy Paul on Wednesday afternoon. Shapovalov, who came to the Cincinnati Masters this week with just one win in his last 10 matches, has found his A-game and has registered back-to-back match wins for the first time since Rome. He is yet to advance beyond the third round in this tournament and faces the ultimate test when he takes on World No. 1 Medvedev.
Daniil Medvedev and Denis Shapovalov are currently tied at 2-2 in their head-to-head. Shapovalov won both meetings on outdoor hard courts in 2017 at the US Open and 2018 in Washington – so clearly he won’t be intimated by the prospect of facing Medvedev. The Russian, however, has risen to become a stalwart in the men’s game in the past couple of years and is probably (outside Djokovic) the benchmark when it comes to hard court competition. Shapovalov had no wind in his sails in recent weeks until he finally got that confidence-boosting win over Dimitrov. But I can’t see him imposing himself with his ferocious ground strokes against a player of Medvedev’s caliber. The top seed absorbs pace like a sponge with his deep positioning and is difficult to overpower from the baseline. If the rallies keep going longer, Shapovalov’s chances of an upset will diminish very fast.
Free Tennis Prediction and Pick: Daniil Medvedev in 2 Sets.
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