Up to now in 2021, Daniil Medvedev has led Russia to the ATP Cup title, reached his maiden Australian Open closing and picked up his tenth ATP Tour trophy on the Open 13 Provence in Marseille.
An fascinating frequent denominator behind these title runs on the ATP Cup and Marseille? Pre-tournament apply periods with Alexei Popyrin. The pair will meet on Sunday for a spot within the Miami Open introduced by Itau Spherical of 16.
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Throughout pre-season, Medvedev joined Popyrin for a number of apply periods. The Russian additionally linked with the Aussie forward of his journey to Marseille, the place he beat Jannik Sinner and Pierre-Hugues Herbert en path to the title.
Medvedev has received to know his opponent nicely over the previous few months, and he’s conscious of the menace that Popyrin will pose in Miami. The pre-season coaching periods additionally proved a attraction for the 21-year-old, who has compiled an 11-3 file and lifted his maiden ATP Tour title (Singapore) this yr.
“He is an amazing participant. I feel [he is] nonetheless younger, nonetheless arising,” mentioned Medvedev. “Nice strokes, nice serve. Stable baseline participant, however he can go to the online, hit winners from all corners of the court docket. It should be a troublesome match. [I am] trying ahead to it.”
Information might equal energy for Medvedev, however that concept works each methods. Popyrin now has an improved understanding of the duty that lies forward on Grandstand, the place he’ll goal to file the most important win of his profession.
“I do know what to anticipate in opposition to him. I practised with him in pre-season, so we all know one another fairly nicely,” mentioned Popyrin. “It is going to be a troublesome match. I’ve by no means performed anybody as excessive as No. 2 on this planet.”
Popyrin can be aiming to earn his first win within the third match of his ATP Head2Head rivalry in opposition to the reigning Nitto ATP Finals champion. The World No. 86 pushed Medvedev to 4 units at Wimbledon in 2019 and fell in straight units to the Russian finally yr’s Australian Open. When requested what the most important problem of going through Medvedev was, Popyrin offered an sincere evaluation.
“I feel all the pieces is difficult,” mentioned Popyrin. “He’s most likely one of the best passer if you come to the online. He is aware of what to do when one other man involves the online, you’ll be able to’t overplay him from the baseline and he has received a large serve. He is a good all-around participant.”
Within the first match of the day on Grandstand, Felix Auger-Aliassime will meet 2018 champion John Isner in a repeat of their 2019 semi-final at this occasion. On that event, Isner raised his stage in essential moments to defeat the 18-year-old 7-6(3), 7-6(4) and attain his second straight Miami closing.
Auger-Aliassime, who received seven matches from qualifying en path to that semi-final encounter, would be the higher-ranked participant for his second ATP Head2Head conflict in opposition to the American. The eleventh seed earned his tenth win of the season in opposition to Herbert to succeed in the Miami third spherical. Isner, the 18th seed, was pressured to get better from a set right down to defeat countryman Mackenzie McDonald 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 in his opening match.
On Courtroom 1, Sinner and Karen Khachanov will meet for the third time of their ATP Head2Head rivalry. Each of their earlier conferences went all the way in which to a final-set tie-break.
Eventually yr’s US Open, Khachanov rallied from two units right down to defeat the #NextGenATP Italian 3-6, 6-7(7), 6-2, 6-0, 7-6(4). Sinner gained his revenge finally month’s Nice Ocean Highway Open, when he saved a match level to beat Khachanov 7-6(4), 4-6, 7-6(4) in an exciting, three-hour, seven-minute semi-final.
“I practise for having robust matches. I practise for staying in tough conditions. I practise particularly for these sorts of matches,” Sinner mentioned. “It should be a troublesome match for positive for each of us. I do know him fairly nicely, he is aware of me fairly nicely… It isn’t going to be straightforward for us.”
Seventh seed Roberto Bautista Agut and sixteenth seed Dusan Lajovic will proceed their Miami campaigns on Sunday. Bautista Agut will face thirty first seed Jan-Lennard Struff within the opening match on Courtroom 1, whereas Lajovic will shut the night time session on Grandstand in opposition to Frances Tiafoe. Alexander Zverev’s conqueror Emil Ruusuvuori, twenty second seed Taylor Fritz and thirty second Alexander Bublik additionally function on the Courtroom 1 schedule.
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SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 28 MARCH 2021
GRANDSTAND begin 11:00 am
 F. Auger-Aliassime (CAN) vs  J. Isner (USA)
Not Earlier than 1:00 pm
 D. Medvedev (RUS) vs A. Popyrin (AUS)
Not Earlier than 7:00 pm
Not Earlier than 8:30 pm
F. Tiafoe (USA) vs  D. Lajovic (SRB)
COURT 1 begin 11:00 am
 J. Struff (GER) vs  R. Bautista Agut (ESP)
 J. Sinner (ITA) vs  Okay. Khachanov (RUS)
E. Ruusuvuori (FIN) vs M. Ymer (SWE)
C. Norrie (GBR) vs  T. Fritz (USA)
Not Earlier than 7:00 pm
 A. Bublik (KAZ) vs J. Duckworth (AUS)
COURT 2 begin 12:00 pm
D. Evans (GBR) / N. Skupski (GBR) vs  J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA)
 I. Dodig (CRO) / F. Polasek (SVK) vs F. Auger-Aliassime (CAN) / H. Hurkacz (POL)
O. Marach (AUT) / L. Saville (AUS) vs Okay. Khachanov (RUS) / A. Rublev (RUS)
COURT 5 begin 12:00 pm
Not Earlier than 1:30 pm
 P. Herbert (FRA) / N. Mahut (FRA) vs M. Kecmanovic (SRB) / A. Qureshi (PAK)
[WC] S. Korda (USA) / M. Mmoh (USA) vs T. Puetz (GER) / A. Zverev (GER)