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Emma Raducanu and Daniil Medvedev’s contrasting fortunes since Novak Djokovic message

Novak Djokovic paid tribute to the “fantastic” Emma Raducanu and a deserving Daniil Medvedev after their victories at the 2021 US Open – but their careers have contrasted since.

Emma Raducanu, Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev

Raducanu and Medvedev have gone in opposite directions with their careers since Djokovic’s message
Two years ago, Daniil Medvedev and Emma Raducanu received congratulations from Novak Djokovic after claiming their first Grand Slam titles at Flushing Meadows. Now, 24 months later, their careers have panned out drastically differently.

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Three-time US Open champion Djokovic was magnanimous in defeat to Russia’s Medvedev. After losing 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 in straight sets at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, the Serbian wrote on social media: “Daniil, you absolutely deserve your first Grand Slam title.”

The men’s singles runner-up was similarly complimentary of Raducanu, describing her run through the tournament as an “amazing fairytale story.” The British player became the first qualifier to win a Slam in the Open era.

Raducanu also ran through the competition without dropping a set, becoming the first woman since Serena Williams in 2014 to achieve that feat. In marking the achievement, Djokovic added: “Emma, you are fantastic.”

Raducanu has not come close to troubling another Grand Slam final since winning the 2021 US Open
However, she has yet to hit those same heights again. In five Slams since, Raducanu has four combined wins, with none coming later than the first round.

More recently, injuries have hit. Undergoing ankle and wrist surgery earlier this year has ultimately meant missing the French Open, Wimbledon, and now the US Open.

Countless pundits have speculated on why she has yet to replicate her form from 2021. ESPN analyst John McEnroe said earlier this summer that coming straight out of school and turning pro has played a part.

Djokovic gave Medvedev his blessing after a deserved victory to win his first Grand Slam final (Image: Getty)
“One of the reasons why I think kids go to college is that it gives them time to grow up and mature so they can handle things if and when something like this happens,” McEnroe told the US Sun. “So it’s more difficult when you’re an 18-year-old and all of a sudden your world changes so drastically.”

Similarly, Medvedev has yet to win another Slam. However, he has put together deep runs over the last two years to remind everyone of his capabilities.

The closest he came to adding another major title came at the next Slam once the calendar flipped over to 2022. After making it to the Australian Open final for the second straight year, Medvedev ultimately lost out again, this time to Rafael Nadal, despite taking a two-set lead.

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A month later, he would mark his rise by overtaking Djokovic in the rankings to become World No. 1 for the first time after the Mexican Open. By reaching the summit of men’s tennis, he broke the ‘Big Four’ dominance of the top spot for the first time since Andy Roddick in February 2004.

However, he would not trouble the latter stages of a tournament again until this summer. Fourth-round exits at the French and US Open came either side of missing Wimbledon due to their ban on Russian and Belarusian athletes.

Medvedev did not fare any better to start this year, with early exits in Australia and at Roland Garros. However, belatedly back at the All England Club, he did advance to the semifinals before losing in straight sets to the eventual champion Carlos Alcaraz.


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