Yannick Hanfmann vs Daniil Medvedev
Time: 6:30 PM IST
In the Rome Masters, Daniil Medvedev once again defeated his rival Alexander Zverev, winning 6-2, 7-6 and securing a spot in the quarterfinals. Medvedev faced challenges in his previous rounds, including being down a break in the second round against Emil Ruusuvuori and losing the first set to Bernabe Zapata Miralles in the third round. However, he navigated through this match with relative ease, making it his most comfortable victory so far in the Rome Masters.
This is the third time in 2023 that Medvedev has beaten Zverev in the round of 16 at a Masters level tournament, with his previous wins coming at Indian Wells and Monte Carlo. Medvedev finished as the runner-up at Indian Wells and was eliminated in the quarterfinals of Monte Carlo.
At the beginning of the Rome Masters, Medvedev was the only current top-10 player who had not secured a victory in the tournament’s main-draw matches. However, he has exceeded his own expectations by delivering an impressive performance and currently holding the highest seed position among the remaining players.
Although Medvedev is the firm favorite to win the title at a hardcourt Masters event, on clay – his least preferred surface – the dynamics change. He has only played four quarterfinal matches in tour-level events on clay in his successful career and hasn’t made it beyond this stage since ATP Barcelona in 2019.
Meanwhile, Yannick Hanfmann bounced back from his defeat by Daniel Altmaier in the third round of the Madrid Masters and delivered an outstanding performance at the Rome Masters, reaching the quarterfinals. This impressive run not only ensures his return to the top 100 rankings but also secures a new career-high ranking for him.
Hanfmann won six matches in a row as a qualifier in this edition of the Rome Masters, including victories against top-10 opponents Taylor Fritz and Andrey Rublev. This is a remarkable achievement for the world #101, who had only one top-10 win to his name before 2023.
Although Hanfmann’s previous successes occurred at high-altitude venues such as Kitzbuhel, Gstaad, Munich, and Santiago, he has defied expectations by securing victories against renowned opponents in Rome, earning valuable ranking points in the process.
While the challenges may intensify for Hanfmann, he can draw inspiration and confidence from the achievements of his compatriot Jan-Lennard Struff, who made an unlikely run to the finals of the most recent Masters event in Madrid, defeating a top-5 opponent and multiple Masters champion, Stefanos Tsitsipas, in the quarterfinals.
Prediction: Back over 21.5 games