Tennis: Djokovic sets up Medvedev clash in Astana semi-finals

ASTANA, Kazakhstan – Novak Djokovic dominated Russian Karen Khachanov 6-4, 6-3 to reach the Astana ATP semi-finals on Friday where he will face Daniil Medvedev.

“I didn’t play as well from the baseline as I did in the first two matches, but still it was enough,” said Djokovic.

“I managed to produce some good tennis when it was the most needed in both sets.”

Facing the US Open semi-finalist, the Serb dropped serve for the first time this week but still has not lost a set since returning to the ATP Tour after a three-month break following his Wimbledon title.

He made his comeback at the Laver Cup team event in London before winning the Tel Aviv tournament last weekend for his 89th career crown.

In the semi-finals, Djokovic will face world number four Medvedev, the man who ended his bid for a calendar Grand Slam in 2021 by winning the US Open.

“I always expect highs from myself,” said 21-time Grand Slam title winner Djokovic.

“Hopefully, I can elevate still the level of my game for tomorrow because it’s going to be needed.”

Medvedev made the last-four by seeing off Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain 6-1, 6-1 to record his 40th win of 2022.

Second seed Medvedev trails Djokovic 6-4 in career meetings.

“I am really happy to play against Novak,” Medvedev said.

“I thought about it before the match and we have only played one tournament together this year, which was Roland Garros. This is the second one and we meet again and I am really happy.”

In Saturday’s other semi-finals, Andrey Rublev, the fifth seed from Russia, will tackle Greek third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas.

On Friday, Rublev defeated Adrian Mannarino 6-1, 6-2 while Tsitsipas saw off Hubert Hurkacz 7-6 (10/8), 6-3. AFP

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