Daniil Medvedev French Open 2021

‘Better to play Daniil Medvedev on grass’, says Jan-Lennard Struff after upset

Jan-Lennard Struff has described upsetting world No. 2 Daniil Medvedev in the first round in Halle as the biggest win of his career.

The German defeated the top seed 7-6 (8-6), 6-3 on “home soil” at the ATP 500 grass court tournament.

World No. 45 Struff saved a set point en route to edging the opening set, before holding on to seal victory despite seeing a 5-1 second set lead cut to 5-3.

“This is the biggest win – rankings wise – of my career, and to do it here on home soil is very special. I live only an hour from here,” the 31-year-old said in a post-match interview.

“He served for the [first] set at 6-5 and twice went for an ace on a second serve and I put returns in at 30-30 and 30-40. I then played a very good tie-break and at 5-1 up in the second set, I thought about being up 5-1 last week against Diego Schwartzman [at Roland Garros].

“I lost the set in the tie-break, after having seven set points, so it was definitely in my head. It’s not something you can get out of your head easily.

“Last time in Cincinnati [in 2019], Medvedev killed me 6-2, 6-1, it was really tough. I didn’t know how to play him. It is better to play him on grass rather than hard courts.

“I have a good game for grass and I like to come in. The wins at Roland Garros definitely gave me a confidence boost.”

Struff will play American qualifier Marcos Giron in the second at the Noventi Open.

Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.