Dominic Thiem after beating Novak Djokovic: Playing legends is something special

Daniil Medvedev is the only player yet to lose a match at the ATP Finals

Djokovic beats Zverev, advances to semifinals at ATP Finals

Rafa Nadal has never won the ATP Finals and the curious wait continues after an inspired Daniil Medvedev defeated the 20-time grand slam champion on Saturday night at the O2 Arena in London.

Djokovic broke Zverev to take a 2-0 lead in the first set when his opponent double-faulted on the second break point.

As for whether the Association of Tennis Professionals should bring in a code on domestic violence, like the ones used in American leagues such as the NFL and the NBA, Djokovic said "Obviously I'm not supporting any kind of violence". He just crushed the ball. "He just took it away from me".

The No. 3-ranked Thiem ended Djokovic's bid for a record-tying sixth ATP Finals title, coming through 7-5, 6-7 (10), 7-6 (5) after trailing 4-0 in the concluding tiebreaker. This time, Thiem will face in the final the victor of the match between Rafael Nadal and Daniil Medvedev. "I played a bad game".

Novak Djokovic's wait for a sixth ATP Finals title goes on- he was last victorious in 2015
Novak Djokovic's wait for a sixth ATP Finals title goes on- he was last victorious in 2015

He took the first set in fortunate style, a net-cord victor nearly hitting Medvedev, but both players smiled and laughed at the changeover before resetting for the second.

Nadal has a 3-0 record against him but the last two matches were battles: Nadal won their 2019 U.S. Open final in five sets, and came from 5-1 down in the last set of their ATP Finals group match a year ago. "Every single match against them is a huge privilege. He's playing great. I wish him all the best".

It has been a joy to watch the progress of Thiem, especially, over the last year and a half as he has worked tirelessly to become a tireless force on a hard court when he had been pigeon-holed as a clay specialist for so many years. We are starting to get to take our marks.

Thiem's defence and power from the baseline put him on top early, and strong serving at key moments allowed him to save the first eight break points he faced.

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"All the match till 5-4 I felt like I was doing some good things but not enough, and I didn't feel inside myself, inside my mind, my game, the link between the shots, which I started feeling after I broke him", Medvedev told reporters.

The Russian has gone 3-0 in group play after going 0-3 on debut a year ago.

The 23-year-old said: "Unfortunately I lost a lot of big matches". With Medvedev having the better of the longer rallies, Thiem kept the points short, using his slice to stop Medvedev unleashing his own heavy shots. Just being closer, going for it a little bit more. "Anyway now we're going to have again a first-time victor, no matter what happens in the second semi-final".

Medvedev will now face Dominic Thiem in the final on Sunday after the Austrian beat world No 1 Djokovic in the other semi-final.

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The Russian, who has won nine consecutive matches in 2020, will play Dominic Thiem for the title.

"That is super special to me, " Thiem said.

Nadal slowed under the relentless barrage in the third, but it was still a surprise to see him fade at the end, losing the last three games as Medvedev romped home.

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