Daniil Medvedev news: The World No 1’s top six LOL moments

Tennis Features
Rafael Nadal and Daniil Medvedev

Men’s tennis has a new world number one in the shape of Daniil Medvedev. He’s not exactly conventional. He’s often controversial. He’s compelling.

Step into the world of Daniil’s deadpan humour….

1 Mind the TV set

It must be pretty painful to lose a five-setter in a Grand Slam final when you are two-nil up against a man ten years your senior and coming back from long-term injury and Covid.

After the painful Australian Open final defeat in January, Medvedev admitted he thought Nadal would get tired.

He later spoke about how he would only be playing tennis for himself after being let down by the “disrespectful” crowd.

Even so, he cheered up enough to gave a corking one-liner in his post-match speech: “’I thank my wife but I think maybe the TV is broken now.”

2 Beating Spain in Madrid and doing a Ronaldo

What you see is generally what you get with Medvedev. He insists: “I definitely will be 100 per cent honest. I definitely don’t provoke the public on purpose. If I do something to provoke them, it’s actually not to make them mad or sad or against me. It’s something that I feel in this moment.” When he beat Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff to send Russia into the Davis Cup final last December, the 26-year-old mimicked Cristiano Ronaldo’s ‘calma’ celebration and then followed this up by saying his best part of the week was beating Spain in Madrid. He carried it off with a straight face too.

3 The ‘What would Novak do?’ Conundrum

The Russian had just beaten Felix Auger-Aliassime in a five-hour five-setter quarter-final at Melbourne last month, fighting back from two sets down.

It’s the kind of comeback where you let the guard down a bit straight after, right?

Perhaps Medvedev didn’t read the room, but he joked to Jim Courier courtside: “I do not really know what to do so I was like – actually, I don’t know if people will like it – but I told myself what would Novak do?”

He then burst into a little giggle, quickly reminding everyone that Djokovic was a great champion to stem the flow of boos.

4 FIFA celebration; A fish out of water

After finally breaking his major duck by beating Novak Djokovic in New York last September, the new world number one immediately celebrated by falling to the floor in the FIFA dead fish celebration.

Medvedev gave his explanation afterwards: “Yeah, I talked to the guys in the locker, they’re young guys, super chill guys. They play FIFA. They were like, That’s legendary. Everybody who I saw who plays FIFA thinks that’s legendary. That’s how I wanted to make it.”

5 Danill Medvedev and his clay feet

Medvedev has a hate-hate relationship with the clay, so it was no surprise to hear his outburst during the changeover at the Madrid Open in 2021 as he struggled against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina: “I don’t want to play here on this surface” he boomed.

When the umpire gave him a shot across the bows, the Russian responded: “I can’t do damage to a bad surface”.

A week later, he lost heavily to compatriot Aslan Karatsev but not before turning to match supervisor Gerry Armstrong to declare: “Gerry, please default me, it would be better for everybody.”

6 Trolling Rublev gives everyone a laugh

When Medvedev helped claim the Laver Cup for Europe in September, the subsequent press conference opened with his impersonation of Andrey Rublev’s favourite adjective. It even had ice- cool Bjorn Borg in stitches. Nothing like trolling your bestie.

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