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Daniil Medvedev to meet Jannik Sinner in Australian Open final

By primenewsghana
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Jannik Sinner and Daniil Medvedev will go head-to-head in their maiden Australian Open men's singles finals thanks to absorbing semi-final victories at the Rod Laver Arena on Friday.

History was written in the day's first battle between Sinner and Novak Djokovic, where the Italian produced a masterful display to eliminate the defending champion 61 6-2 6-7[6] 6-3.

A fascinating tactical battle between Zverev and Medvedev followed in the night session, and despite falling two sets down, the latter sensationally fought back to win 5-7 3-6 7-6[4] 7-6[5] 6-3.

Reuniting with Djokovic after two matches at the 2023 ATP Finals, where Sinner emerged triumphant in the round-robin before the Serbian avenged that defeat in the final, the Italian trailblazer benefitted from an extremely off-colour display from the reigning champion to ensure there would be a new king of Melbourne.

Djokovic was plagued by mistakes throughout the semi-final, racking up a staggering 54 unforced errors in comparison to 32 winners, while also committing four double faults.

In contrast, a spectacular all-around display from Sinner saw the fourth seed win 83% of points behind his first serve, and Djokovic remarkably failed to earn one break point against the 22-year-old, the first time he has achieved that unwanted statistic in a major match.

Despite rediscovering some of his absent grit in the tie-breaker, Djokovic's level dropped once again in the fourth as Sinner became the first-ever Italian to reach an Australian Open singles final.

In addition, the 22-year-old is now the youngest Melbourne men's finalist since Djokovic himself in 2008, and the Serbian admitted to the press that his display was one of the worst he has ever produced in a Grand Slam tournament.

Similarly to Djokovic, Medvedev also fell two sets down in his final-four clash with Zverev, who had triumphed over Carlos Alcaraz in the quarter-finals while an exhausted Medvedev came through a five-set slog with Hubert Hurkacz.

Operating deep behind the baseline on the Zverev serve - as is his trademark - Medvedev landed fewer first serves and hit fewer winners than the German, but as the match wore on, the former US Open winner benefitted from an increasing number of mishit shots from his opponent.

Zverev committed a staggering 70 unforced mistakes throughout the four-hour and 18-minute battle, in which Medvedev won 79% of his points at the net en route to a sixth Grand Slam final, all of which have come on hard courts.

Before Sinner and Medvedev square off in Sunday's showpiece, the women's singles title is up for grabs on Saturday, where Aryna Sabalenka defends her 2023 crown against first-time finalist Qinwen Zheng.