Daniil Medvedev won his fourth title of a spectacular year with a thumping 6-4, 6-1 victory over Alexander Zverev in the Shanghai Masters final on Sunday.
Victory for the 23-year-old Russian, contesting a sixth final in a row, was more evidence that he is the prime contender to join the “Big Three” of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.
Medvedev made a fast start, winning his service game and then breaking Zverev’s for an early 2-0 lead.
Under a closed stadium roof because of rain in Shanghai, Zverev was suffocating, down 3-0 after 11 minutes.
But the German sent down an ace to finally get a foothold in the match and then broke back for 3-2.
The duo went with serve until Zverev conceded the set with two calamitous double faults on the trot, the last of which he transpired to gift with a horribly mis-hit second serve that drew a few giggles from the crowd.
The second set began in the same way as the first – Medvedev breaking Zverev’s first service game for a prompt 2-0 lead.
He then broke once more in the fourth for a dominant victory, and sealed the title with an ace – and the most subtle of smiles.
The next generation has stamped its authority on Shanghai with Djokovic and Federer – beaten by Zverev – both going out in the quarterfinals.
Nadal failed to play because of a wrist injury.