Throwback: Novak Djokovic tops Daniil Medvedev in their only Melbourne clash
In their only previous Melbourne Park match, Djokovic defeated Medvedev 6-4, 6-7, 6-2, 6-3 in three hours and 15 minutes for the tenth Australian Open quarter-final. Bouncing back after that tight second set, Djokovic took charge to seal the deal in sets three and four and remain on the title course. Despite 18 aces, Medvedev had to play against 18 break chances, suffering seven breaks to propel Novak over the top. Djokovic stayed focused in the crucial moments to defend seven out of nine break points and keep the pressure on his young opponent.
The Serb fired more winners and forced more mistakes from the Russian, taming his strokes nicely in the mid-range rallies to forge the crucial advantage. Novak survived a challenging service game at 2-2 in the opener and opened a 4-2 lead with a break a few minutes later.
Djokovic missed a chance to bring the set home at 5-3, losing serve before earning another break in game ten to wrap up the opener thanks to a backhand winner. Trailing 3-1 in set number two, Medvedev painted a backhand down the line winner in game seven to pull the break back and earn a boost.
Daniil won the tie break 7-5 following a massive rally to level the overall score and force Novak to raise his game. Ready for that task, Djokovic secured a double break in the third set and wrapped it up with a forehand winner at 5-2, becoming the favorite ahead of set number four. Forging an early advantage, Novak saved a break chance in game six and moved over the top with another break at 5-3.