Daniil Medvedev will make history on Monday when he climbs to a career-high No. 2 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, becoming the first player outside the Big Four of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray to hold a top two spot since July 2005. This week, another player earned a career milestone.
Novak Djokovic set the all-time record for most weeks at World No. 1 with his 311th week, surpassing Federer’s 310.
“First of all, it’s an unbelievable achievement. For sure I think in the world of tennis we talk about Grand Slams more than anything else. But this is also a small competition, [and] I’m sure he’s really happy about it,” Medvedev said. “The way he’s played, he’s definitely capable of catching 400 weeks. We’re going to try to not let him do this.
“I didn’t manage to do anything in the Australian Open final, but that is what sport is about. Nobody is going to give him an easy pass, he’s going to have to earn it.”
Watch Medvedev-Sinner Highlights:
Medvedev tried to dethrone Djokovic at Melbourne Park in the Australian Open final, but the Serbian was at his ruthless best last month to capture his ninth title at the season’s first major. The Russian has great respect for what the World No. 1 and his greatest rivals, Federer and Nadal, have accomplished.
“As I’ve always said about the Big Three, they are unbelievable. The records they have set [are] probably not going to be beaten maybe in 100 years,” Medvedev said. “It’s very rare that you see this in sports. I don’t think you can say that other players were not good enough in this era, it’s just that they were unbelievable and there’s nothing for others to be ashamed of.”
Federer, who is 39, returned to action this week for the first time since the 2020 Australian Open due to two right knee surgeries he had last year. Medvedev wasn’t able to catch much of the 103-time tour-level titlist’s matches in Doha, but he saw some of the Swiss’ win against Daniel Evans.
“As we were talking with some other players here, many, many players would go out on the court after more than one year not playing and he would lose two and two without being able to put two balls in a row in the court,” Medvedev said. “He’s almost 40, didn’t play for one year and is still capable of winning matches. It’s amazing.”
Medvedev has played Federer three times, losing on each occasion. Their most recent ATP Head2Head clash came at the 2019 Miami Open presented by Itau.
“I would definitely like to play Roger. He’s one of the three best in tennis history, it’s always great playing him,” Medvedev said. “I lost three times, I was not at the level that I am right now. But it’s still Roger, so it would be nice to play a few matches against him. [It’s] not only [about] winning, but every time you step out on the court against the Big Three, it’s a special feeling.”
Medvedev will play Matthew Ebden on Saturday in the Marseille semi-finals.