The youngest ATP final since 2007 (Indian Wells: Nadal d. Djokovic): almost 22-year-old Medvedev  against almost 19-year-old De Minaur – both lanky guys born in February. De Minaur was a sensation of the Australian swing in 2018; having played just 5 main-level events in 2017, he began another season as a player ranked No. 208 to move 81 places within two weeks – first with “wild card” he reached the semifinal in Brisbane, then with “special exempt” advanced to his first ATP final in Sydney, defeating in those two Australian tournaments very experienced guys like Raonic, Verdasco & F.Lopez. He was awarded another “wild card” in the Australian Open, and for two sets he played an equal match with a seeded Berdych… Back to the final – Medvedev had played his first ATP final one year before in Chennai, soon afterwards he surprised Djokovic in the Davis Cup first round (led 6-3, 3:0* before struggling with an injury & retiring) and vanished in mediocrity. His ranking didn’t significantly improve in 2017, and he had to participate in Sydney qualies. In the final he lost seven straight games, couldn’t find a medicine against the rock solid Australian until he trailed *2:3 in the 2nd set. Since then he overwhelmed his ~15 cm shorter opponent. Led 4:0* (15-all) and had a match point at 5:3, but De Minaur almost managed to make a miraculous comeback – there was 5-all (deuce) when Medvedev found another gear to finish the no-serve-and-volley final after 2 hours 13 minutes.
Medvedev’ route to his maiden title (29th main-level event):
[ Zhurbin 6-1, 6-2; Safranek 6-2, 6-4 ]
1 Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-2, 6-3
2 Jared Donaldson 6-3, 4-6, 7-5
Q Paolo Lorenzi 6-3, 6-3
S Fabio Fognini 2-6, 6-4, 6-1
W Alex de Minaur 1-6, 6-4, 7-5
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