Daniil Medvedev explains how becoming ‘more professional’ helped turn his fortunes around
He admits in the first few years as a professional he was happy to be “taking it kind of easy”, but Daniil Medvedev is certainly starting to see the results after dedicating himself to the sport.
The Russian turned pro in 2014, but he didn’t really set the world alight during his first few years on the ATP Tour.
His form started to pick up in 2017 as he started to move up the rankings, and he continued to improve in 2018 as he won his maiden singles trophy.
However, it was in 2019 when he finally started to make people sit up and take note as he won four titles and finished runner-up at five other tournaments, including the US Open.
Although he didn’t quite reach those highs this year, he still picked up an ATP Masters 1000 title in Paris on Sunday.
Asked about his change in fortunes, Medvedev believes a change in attitude played a big role.
“Starting from last preseason I became much more professional in everything I do, talking about preparation or even life apart from tennis,” he told ATPTour.com. “I started to dedicate my life to tennis. I started to do everything I can to be better in tennis and I’m really happy that it worked out because the worst scenario is when you do everything and it doesn’t work out, then you start asking questions: “I am doing everything right, so maybe I should just take it easy and be where I am?’ So I’m really happy that it worked out and I’m continuing [forward].”
Medvedev, who moved back to his career-high of No 4 in the ATP Rankings after his Paris Masters success, also feels his coach Gilles Cervara has been a major influence on his career.
“I became more mature, which is normal. I was never dedicating myself to tennis until that moment. I was always taking it kind of easy and it was still working. I started to be Top 100,” he said.
“I think it’s a lot of influence of my coach. My coach, we have a great relationship, he never tells me you should do this, he says, ‘I think this will help you’, and then you start asking yourself questions. ‘Is it true what he’s saying? Will it help me?’”
He added: “I was talking with him and I said, ‘Why should I take tennis seriously? Why should I do everything professionally? It takes so much dedication, so much mental strength. I feel like when I do it, nothing works’.
“He was laughing at me, saying, ‘Okay, we’ll see. We’ll see. Maybe you’re right’. Now he’s laughing about this saying, ‘Hey Daniil, do you remember what you said? What do you think about this right now’?”
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