Medvedev's Paris blues are Fucsovics' jazz

 - Chris Oddo

Russian fourth seed falls in Roland-Garros opening round for fourth year in a row

Daniil Medvedev, Roland-Garros 2020, 1er tour©Nicolas Gouhier / FFT

Daniil Medvedev is one of the more thrilling personalities in the men’s game. He’s also a meteoric talent, who has the potential to impact any draw he enters, and even though clay isn’t his favorite surface, one would think that the Russian, currently ranked No.5 in the world, is destined to win his share of matches at Roland-Garros. 

But for now, the search for an elusive maiden victory on the terre battue in Paris continues. 

Medvedev, the No.4 seed this year, dropped to 0-4 lifetime at Roland-Garros on Monday as he was beaten 6-4, 7-6(3) 2-6, 6-1 on Court Suzanne-Lenglen by Hungary’s Marton Fucsovics, who scored a maiden top-10 win on his 15th attempt.

The 24-year-old Medvedev, who first played the main draw in Paris in 2017, lost a fierce battle of attrition with the uber fit Fucsovics, a 28-year-old who has begun to make a name for himself in the last two seasons.

The contest lasted three hours and 17 minutes, and it was Fucsovics’ success in a pivotal second-set tiebreaker that put him in the driver’s seat. 

It also left Medvedev in a racquet-smashing fury but to his credit he recovered to take the third set and competed well in the fourth.

It was, quite simply, Fucsovics' night.

The world No.63 mixed up his strokes, keeping Medvedev off balance with a steady diet of slice, and defended all corners of the court exceptionally well. He struck 36 winners to 27 for Medvedev, and his milestone victory sets up a second-round encounter with Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas

Fucsovics, who became the first Hungarian to win an ATP title in 36 years in 2018 at Geneva, entered the match with zero victories in 14 previous matches against top 10-ranked players. 

“It’s one of my biggest wins tonight,” he said on court after the match. “First time I beat a top-10 player, especially in a Grand Slam. I really wanted to show that I’m a very good player, and I also want to be in the top 10.”

Medvedev’s losing streak on the surface stretches to six -- he has not won on clay since he defeated Dominic Thiem to reach the Barcelona final in 2019. The Russian's 0-4 career record at Roland-Garros pales in comparison to his 25-11 combined record at the other three majors.

Before the tournament Medvedev talked of changing his fortunes in Paris, and said it was something he was anxiously awaiting.

"Yeah, it would be definitely really exciting to get my first win here," he said. "It's something for sure I want to get. Of course, I have to work really hard for it."

Unfortunately for Medvedev, he'll have to wait another year...