Djokovic drops at Dubai Open, Medvedev world number one on Dan!

Novak Djokovic will fall from No. 1 in the ATP rankings and be replaced by Daniil Medvedev after losing 6-4, 7-6 (4) to Czech qualifier Jiri Vesely in the quarterfinals of the Dubai Championships on Thursday.

Eighteen long years later, a world number one has emerged in men’s tennis other than the Big Four. Russia’s Danil Medvedev has become the world number one. This marked the end of Novak Djokovic’s long rule. Medvedev became world number one after losing to Novak Djokovic’s Czech Jiri Wesley in the quarterfinals of the Dubai Open. Djokovic lost to straight sets in Dubai. Djokovic, who saw 2 breaks in the match, was broken three times by the Czech. The Czech won the first set 6-4, overcame Djokovic’s comeback in the second set and won the match through a tiebreaker. With this, the Czech player was able to advance to the semis with his dream victory.

Medvedev is the 27th player to reach the ATP World No. 1 ranking. The Russian is also the world’s tallest player. Meanwhile, second seed Andrea Rublev advanced to the semifinals after defeating American McConnell McDonald after losing the first set. Rublev won the first set 6-2, won the second set 6-2 and the third set 6-1. Rublav, who has conceded three times, has broken the American five times. Umbert Hurkash, meanwhile, advanced to the semifinals, beating fourth seed Yannick Sinner 6-3, 6-3 in straight sets. Hurkash, who broke Sinner 3 times in two sets in a one-sided match, advanced to the last four with an easy victory.

Djokovic needed to at least reach the semi-finals in the Emirates to try and stop Daniil Medvedev from replacing him at the top of the rankings.

Competing in his first tournament of the season, and first since getting deported from Australia, Djokovic needed to at least reach the semi-finals in the Emirates to try and stop Daniil Medvedev from replacing him at the top of the rankings.

But Vesely had other ideas as the left-handed qualifier improved his career record against Djokovic to 2-0 – a result that will see Medvedev become the first man since 2004 outside the “Big Four” – Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray – to occupy the number one ranking on Monday.

Djokovic, who has spent a record 361 weeks as the world number one, said at the start of the tournament that he “would be the first to congratulate” Medvedev, if the Russian succeeded in his quest for the summit.

US Open champion Medvedev, currently involved in the Acapulco tournament, becomes the third Russian man after Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Marat Safin to ascend to the world number one spot.

Vesely, a former junior number one, has won five matches in Dubai so far this week, making it through qualifying to reach his first tour-level semi-final since Pune in 2020.

“It’s an amazing feeling. I never thought I would really have a chance against Novak, he’s one of the greatest of all time, if not the best,” he said.

“After the last 12 months, I’ve been going through… it’s unbelievable, I have so many emotions inside, it’s hard to describe, it’s just an amazing feeling,” added Vesely, who next takes on Denis Shapovalov or Ricardas Berankis.

The 28-year-old came out victorious in his only previous meeting with Djokovic, defeating the Serb on the clay courts of Monte Carlo back in 2016.

Vesely started the match by breaking Djokovic on his way to a 2-0 lead.

He lost his advantage as the top seed struck back but some clever drop shots and some tricky lefty serves saw the towering Czech inch ahead once again and he served out the opening set on the 47-minute mark.

A down-the-line backhand drive earned Vesely a break in the seventh game of the second set but he wobbled while serving for the victory as Djokovic pegged him back to level for 5-5.

Vesely raced to a 3-0 lead in the tiebreak and soon completed a huge surprise win over the five-time Dubai champion.

Sinner slumps

Earlier on Centre Court, second seed Andrey Rublev advanced to his third semi-final in as many weeks with a 2-6, 6-3, 6-1 victory over American Mackenzie McDonald.

Contesting a 12th consecutive quarter-final at the ATP 500 level, Rublev recovered from a poor first-set performance against McDonald to reach the Dubai semi-finals for a second year in a row.

The 24-year-old Russian will next face off with fifth seeded Hubert Hurkacz, who eased past Italian fourth seed Jannik Sinner 6-3, 6-3 in 84 minutes.


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