#NextGenATP Medjedovic Downs Lehecka In Astana QFs

  • Posted: Oct 01, 2023

#NextGenATP Medjedovic Downs Lehecka In Astana QFs

20-year-old to face Korda next, Ofner ousts Thiem

Hamad Medjedovic captured the biggest win of his career Sunday at the Astana Open, where the #NextGenATP Serbian overcame fourth seed Jiri Lehecka 6-3, 6-4 to reach the semi-finals.

A single break of World No. 29 Lehecka’s serve in each set was enough for Medjedovic to book his last-four spot at the ATP 250 in Kazakhstan. The 20-year-old, who also reached the semi-finals on clay in Gstaad in July, saved all four break points he faced en route to his 69-minute triumph.

“Honestly, it feels amazing,” said Medjedovic in his on-court interview. “It’s an amazing feeling to be in the semi-finals of Astana. It’s my second ATP 250 semi-final, but I think this one feels pretty special because I beat very good players and especially on indoor hard courts. I’m very happy with the win and let’s try to win some more matches.”

Medjedovic has defeated countryman Laslo Djere, Alexander Shevchenko and Lehecka in Astana so far. His run has propelled him 16 spots to No. 104 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings, and he is likely to crack the Top 100 for the first time if he can defeat fifth seed Sebastian Korda in Monday’s semi-finals.

The 20-year-old Medjedovic, who has enjoyed guidance and financial support from World No. 1 Novak Djokovic during his transition from juniors to the pros, is also on track to qualify for the season-ending Next Gen ATP Finals. He is eighth in the Pepperstone ATP Race To Jeddah and will leapfrog Dominic Stricker and Luca Van Assche into sixth if he can reach the Astana final.

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American Korda downed top seed Tallon Griekspoor 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 to reach his 10th ATP Tour semi-final, and his fifth of 2023. The World No. 28 sent down 12 aces in his maiden Lexus ATP Head2Head clash with Griekspoor as he reached the last four on his event debut in Kazakhstan.

Like Medjedovic, Sebastian Ofner also reached his second ATP Tour semi-final on Sunday. The 27-year-old prevailed 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 in an all-Austrian clash against Dominic Thiem. Ofner was on top for much of the match as he chased a first victory in four Lexus ATP Head2Head meetings with Thiem, and he converted three of 15 break points he earned to seal a two-hour, 27-minute win.

With his hard-earned victory, Ofner is guaranteed to rise into the Top 50 of the Pepperstone ATP Rankings for the first time on Monday. He is currently up nine spots to No. 49 in the Live Rankings.

After Jurij Rodionov also advanced to the quarter-finals, this week in Astana marked the first time three Austrians had reached the quarter-finals of the same ATP Tour event. Only Ofner remains in the draw in Kazakhstan, however, after Adrian Mannarino defeated Rodionov 6-1, 7-6(6) to advance to face Ofner on Monday.

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