Medvedev in 'better shape' for ATP Finals after Bercy triumph

Paris (AFP) –


Newly-crowned Paris Masters champion Daniil Medvedev said on Sunday he is in "better shape" to compete for the ATP Tour Finals title this season ahead of the season-ending event in London.

The Russian lost all three of his group matches last year on his Finals debut, having seen a run of six successive finals ended by an early defeat at the Paris Masters.

Medvedev's first final since saw him come from a set behind to beat Alexander Zverev 5-7, 6-4, 6-1 at Bercy Arena on Sunday.

"(I'm) coming (in) better shape than last year," said the world number five, with the ATP Finals starting in a week's time.

"Last year (I) was real exhausted, lost first round in Paris. That's when you lose your confidence. When you lose first round you always lose your confidence.

"(I've) just won the tournament, going to have a few days off. Come to London, practise good. Hopefully can get some wins there."

The most disappointing of Medvedev's ATP Finals defeats in 2019 came against Rafael Nadal when he imploded from 5-1 up in a deciding set with a match point.

But the 24-year-old says he feels as though he is far less likely to suffer that type of collapse now.

"You will not all your life just be there crying about this match," said Medvedev, who also lost to Nadal in an epic 2019 US Open final.

"(It) was almost (the) last match of the season for me. I knew I had to leave it behind.

"Just learn from it and learn how, okay, if you're up 5-1 and you lose even your serve on 5-2, you should not go crazy, because you are still up.

"I have been working on my mental strength for a long time. I think I have done a lot of progress, because even if you see me still doing meltdowns, it's nothing compared to what I was when I was a junior, younger."

Medvedev did not have a single break point in the opening set against Zverev, but found a way through late in the second before racing to victory, aided by a run of seven straight games.

"After the first set I didn't know actually what to do, because I had zero break points," said Medvedev, who also beat Zverev in last year's Shanghai Masters final.

"It's tough to compare with the Shanghai final where I was on top of him all of the match.

"Here it was a really tight match where both could be the winners. So I'm really happy to win it."