Defending champion Daniil Medvedev shattered his racquet in a post-match rage after American and World No.36 Reilly Opelka came from a set down to defeat the Russian 2-6, 7-5, 6-4 at the St Petersburg Open on Thursday.
The giant American saved four break points in the deciding set before going on to complete the biggest win of his career against the World No.6.
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Medvedev, who has been in a poor run of form, was infuriated after losing the match and after congratulating Opelka he smashed his racquet against the floor.
Fans jumped on social media to applaud Opelka and comment on yet another Medvedev outburst.
The defending champion Medvedev knocked out by Opelka. Medvedev breaks his racquet. What an end.— Neerav (@Neerav31258) October 15, 2020
Daniil Medvedev loses 6-2, 5-7, 4-6 to Reilly Opelka in St Petersburg.— Live Tennis (@livetennis) October 15, 2020
Congratulates the American at net, then immediately smashes his racquet. pic.twitter.com/R4CdasDPCg
Medvedev’s reaction. Reminds me of Kyrgios v Federer in Miami ‘17 https://t.co/j3WEXilJT8— Brandon 🐝 (@BrandonSC_) October 15, 2020
Opelka admitted after the match he is a big fan of Medvedev and finds his style and on-court behaviour exciting to watch.
"I've been a fan of Dani for a while — before the US Open... unlike most of the tennis fans,” Opelka joked.
"He's one the guys I watch the most because he's fun to watch.
"It's always a tough match, playing one of the best players in the world in general, but especially at his home. It's a great win for me," Opelka added.
"It was ugly for the first set-and-a-half. I felt like I barely won any points on his serve, but part of that is just because of my opponent... Daniil is an absolute nightmare to play, especially for a guy like me because he just runs every ball down."
Reilly Opelka, after beating Daniil Medvedev at #spbopen:— Oleg S. (@AnnaK_4ever) October 15, 2020
"I've been a fan of Dani for a while — before the US Open... unlike most of the tennis fans" 😂
"He's one the guys I watch the most because he's fun to watch"
Medvedev’s horrible run of form
It was Medvedev's third defeat in four matches having made opening round exits in Hamburg and Roland Garros.
Medvedev has crashed out of the French Open in fiery scenes after he was hit with a point penalty for smashing his racquet.
Medvedev has the unwanted statistic of losing in the first round at Roland Garros in four successive years.
Opelka will next face last year's runner-up Borna Coric after the seventh-seeded Croat enjoyed a 6-3, 7-5 win over Russian wild card Roman Safiullin.
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