MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Daniil Medvedev hasn’t won a title in the United States since capturing the 2021 U.S. Open, when he turned away Novak Djokovic’s bid for a calendar-year Grand Slam.
Now the Miami Open's No. 4 seed is one victory from a fresh American title, beating fellow Russian Karen Khachanov 7-6 (5), 3-6, 6-3 in the semifinals Friday, the same day Wimbledon announced Russians will be allowed back — with conditions.
The other men's semifinal is Friday night between Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner. If Alcaraz wins, it'll set up a rematch of the Indian Wells final; Alcaraz beat Medvedev 6-3, 6-2 on March 19.
Also Friday, No. 15 seed Petra Kvitova beat unseeded Sorana Cirstea 7-5, 6-3 in the second women’s semifinal. Kvitova will face the red-hot Elena Rybakina in the final.
Medvedev has won 23 of his last 24 matches — the lone loss to now-world No. 1 Alcaraz — and is in his fifth straight final.
Medvedev has been friends with the 14th-seeded Khachanov since childhood, and they're each fierce baseliners, with one rally lasting 31 shots.
Medvedev needed a tiebreaker to win the first set, serving it out with the first of 13 aces in the match. Proving a little more consistent in the second set, Khachanov forced a third by breaking Medvedev’s serve early to go up 2-0.
But Medvedev owned the third, surviving an early breakpoint when Khachanov hit a loose backhand into the doubles alley for a rare unforced error.
Medvedev broke Khachanov in the next game to go up 3-1 and a won a wondrous 26-shot rally on match point. Khachanov picked up a drop shot, then retrieved a shot from the baseline between the legs before his friend put away the winner.
In the women's match, the lefty Kvitova rallied from a 5-3 hole in the first set, facing two set points at 15-40 before willing herself back. She won six straight games in all, taking the first set and going up a break and 2-0 in the second.
Rybakina, who has won 13 straight matches, including the Indian Wells title last week, beat Jessica Pegula in straight sets in a rain-delayed match that ended late Thursday night.
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