Daniil Medvedev hoisted the biggest title of his career this weekend as the Russian defeated Dominic Thiem 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-4 to win the Nitto ATP Finals.
Medvedev came out victorious in two hours and 43 minutes, the longest best-of-three match in Nitto ATP Finals history, after downing Rafael Nadal in the semifinals.
“What a match. One of my best victories,” said Medvedev. “Dominic, congratulations already for what you achieved in your career. Your name is already in the history of tennis books. It is amazing. You won a Grand Slam this year. You are playing unbelievable. I hope we are going to have many more matches to come on the big occasions like this.”
Medvedev is the first Russian to win the event since Nikolay Davydenko in 2009.
“I always said before this tournament that it would be an amazing story if, here in London, where the tournament was for 12 years, that the first champion would be Russian and the last champion would be Russian, too,” said Medvedev. “A lot of thanks to Nikolay Davydenko for being an inspiration for many kids. I hope to continue doing his job.”
For Thiem, it’s the second straight year he has fallen in the championship match of the tour’s end-of-year finals. Last year, he lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece in a third-set tiebreaker.
“Of course, I am disappointed, but at the same time I am also proud of the performance all week,” said Thiem. “Daniil really deserved it. Amazing match. Congratulations for, in general, another great year…It was a pleasure today, even though I lost.”
In the doubles final, Wesley Koolhof and Nikola Mektic, who teamed up for the first time this year, won the title by winning 6-2, 4-6, 10-5 over Jurgen Melzer and Edouard Roger-Vasselin.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling. It’s not just the way to finish this year. This is something to remember throughout the whole life,” said Mektic. “This is for sure my biggest achievement of my life and of my career, so this is something that I will remember forever. It’s a great way to finish the year and a lot of reasons to celebrate now.”