Daniil Medvedev and Taylor Fritz to do battle for a cool $1,000,000 winner’s cheque in exhibition final
Daniil Medvedev and Taylor Fritz are the last two players standing in the Diriyah Tennis Cup and on Saturday they will clash for one of the biggest cheques in sporting history.
The winner of the final will walk away with $1,000,000 while the runner-up will receive $500,000 for his efforts at the exhibition event in Saudi Arabia.
Defending champion Medvedev, who won the inaugural and only previous edition in 2019, defeated Stan Wawrinka 6-4, 6-4 in the semi-final while Fritz took out Cameron Norrie to secure his place in the grand finale.
Medvedev broke in game nine of the first set and games one and five of the second, although Wawrinka claimed one break back.
“It was so tough to play him, but for him as well because I played well today,” the 2021 US Open champion said.
“I was putting a lot of balls in the court to try and make his life difficult too, but sometimes he plays so strongly that there was no chance to touch the ball.
“It was a high-level match and I was very happy to win it.
“I will try my best (in the final), there were a lot of people here today and it was a great atmosphere. I’m sure there will be even more people around. I’m looking forward to it, so I’ll relax now and then get ready.”
Fritz had to work for his win against Norrie as it went to an ultimate tie-breaker and the American emerged with a 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 10-6 victory.
There were no breaks of serve in the first set with Fritz just edging the tie-breaker before Norrie broke in game one of the second set. The tie-breaker was a humdinger with eight mini-breaks as the American secured the win.
“I think playing Cam is tough because you do have to be patient. But the second I get the opportunity to go for a shot, I have to go for it with him because he always moves me around a lot and he will beat me to the punch if I am too patient,” Fritz said.
He added: “Anytime I go to an event, exhibition or ATP event, I am going to be trying to win it.”
Andrey Rublev and Matteo Berretini will take on Dominic Stricker and Hubert Hurkacz in the doubles final after the former beat Alexander Zverev and Dominic Thiem 6-3, 7-6 while the Stricker-Hurkacz partnership defeated Nick Kyrgios and Stefanos Tsitsipas 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (7-3).
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