French Open: Daniil Medvedev says Alex de Minaur can beat anyone

Grand Slam winner Daniil Medvedev says in current form Alex de Minaur “can beat anyone”, with Novak Djokovic’s potential retirement potentially opening the door to a 20-year French Open for the Australian star.

After losing three of the last four sets to de Minaur at Roland Garros, and citing a blister on his foot as an excuse, six-time Grand Slam finalist Medvedev said his Australian opponent showed skills he had never seen before meetings.

The victory moved de Minaur to number eight in the live rankings and set up a quarter-final clash with Germany’s Alexander Zverev, who won a five-set battle over Holger Rune.

World No 1 Djokovic could be de Minaur’s semi-final opponent, but he has revealed he may withdraw from the quarter-final clash against Casper Ruud after aggravating an existing knee injury.

Having already become the first Australian to reach the quarter-finals of the French Open since former world No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt in 2004, Medvedev, while reluctant to pick de Minaur to win, said the Australian was showing enough to suggest that he might also have made his mark in Paris.

“Because today he played probably the best match we have played,” said Medvedev, who lost for the third time to de Minaur in their first clay court match.

“I’ve been watching his clay court matches this year to try to see what tactics to use… but I haven’t seen him play like that.

“I mean, his serve today was better than most of the guys I’ve played with on clay, so it was surprising.

“Today he improved a lot in every aspect. Then we get to the point where we know that Alex can beat anyone: I think he has already beaten Novak (Djokovic), everyone, Rafa on clay.

“But then the question is whether you are ready to do it week after week and become number one in the world, two in the world, three in the world.

“He’s close there, so he’s a top player, then it’s a question of what he does in the quarterfinals. If he plays like he played today, we’ll see.”

But despite seeing a marked improvement in de Minaur, Medvedev was not convinced the Australian would lift the trophy.

“Predictions are a bit disrespectful because when you say someone it’s like you underestimate the other guys a bit,” Medvedev said.

“Right now, seeing Novak (Djokovic) struggling with his leg, I would say Carlos (Alcaraz) or Jannik (Sinner) because they are both playing well.

“They both have a slam, they have experience. I’m in the top two, three in the world, so my opinion, Carlos or Jannik, but let’s see.”

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