Daniil Medvedev Australian Open semi

‘It’s step-by-step’ Daniil Medvedev measured in plan to improve on clay

Daniil Medvedev has set himself realistic but important goals to improve his form on clay, a surface on which he has historically struggled. 

Daniil Medvedev has set not so lofty targets for the clay season ahead, but admits that any progress will be good as compared with his past record on the surface.

“That’s the goal. I always said for me it’s always step by step,” Medvedev revealed in a press conference prior to the Madrid Open. “So the goal actually for all three tournaments, Rome, Roland Garros, and Madrid, is to at least win one match in each of them.”

The Russian has not won a main draw match at any of the three tournaments, with an 0-2, 0-2 and 0-4 record at each of Rome, Roland Garros and Madrid respectively.

Medvedev’s best results on clay have come at the Barcelona Open and Monte Carlo Masters, reaching the semi-finals at Monte Carlo 2019, defeating Novak Djokovic in the quarter-finals, before reaching the Barcelona final weeks later.

“Of course, when I come to [a] tournament, the main goal is to win it,” Medvedev went on to say. “It’s tougher on clay than on hard courts, so [I] will adjust, try my best, [and] hope to show some good tennis, because that’s the most important. When I show good tennis I can win some great matches.”



Medvedev pointed out that Madrid could be a good opportunity for him, considering the tournament’s unique conditions.

“I would say it’s more comparable to hard courts here in Madrid because the clay is fast, altitude, serve goes fast,” he explained. “In the results and in the game, we can see that guys who suffer a little bit on clay can play better here.

“That’s also one of the things that makes me feel more comfortable before the tournament. After, it’s always the same thing that the first match is a first match.

“Of course [it] will be a little bit tougher [for me] than other guys,” Medvedev said. “For example, I will be playing maybe Davidovich Fokina or [a qualifier]. He played like five tournaments on clay already. I played zero.”

Alejandro Davidovich Fokina reached his first Masters 1000 quarter-final in Monte Carlo before advancing to the semi-finals at the Estoril Open.

“I definitely need to win some matches to just get this feeling of winning matches on clay, because that’s the most important.”

Daniil Medvedev will face either Alejandro Davidovich Fokina or Pierre-Hugues Herbert in the second round of the Madrid Masters.