Daniil Medvedev advances at Australian Open after opponent retires

Daniil Medvedev advances at Australian Open after opponent retires

Third-seeded Daniil Medvedev, the 2021 and 2022 finalist at Melbourne Park, advanced to the second round of the Australian Open when his opponent, Terence Atmane, retired early in the fourth set suffering from cramps.

Medvedev had dropped the first set at Margaret Court Arena but was leading 5-7, 6-2, 6-4, 1-0 on Monday when the 22-year-old Atmane withdrew.

“It’s quite funny because when I was feeling tired in the third set, I looked up the other end and saw he was cramping,” Medvedev said. “The conditions were fine, but it has not been hot these seven days and then it was hot today, so you get more stressed.”

Atmane was holding his own in the third set when he started suffering severe cramps in his thigh. Atmane received a time penalty as he struggled to get to the service line and another violation for smashing his racket in frustration, but he played on and even broke Medvedev’s service after a courtside massage.

“Tough match, he played pretty well,” said Medvedev, who elected to skip the tune-up tournaments in Australia this year. “I played badly at the start of the first set. When I started feeling better physically, he started cramping.”

Ben Shelton, a quarterfinalist here 12 months ago, beat Roberto Bautista Agut 6-2, 7-6 (2), 7-5.

Another American, 25th-seeded Sebastian Korda, defeated Vit Kopriva 6-1, 6-4, 2-6, 4-6, 6-2.

No. 7 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece rallied from a set down to beat lucky loser Zizou Bergs 5-7, 6-1, 6-1, 6-3.

Bergs was a late replacement for the injured Matteo Berrettini, and Tsitsipas said the change of opponent had thrown him off his game early on.

Also on the men’s side, three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka exited in the first round after losing 6-4, 3-6, 5-7, 6-3, 6-0 to France’s Adrian Mannarino.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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