There are just four men left vying for the coveted Grand Slam title at Flushing Meadows. Unlike in the women’s draw, all four of the remaining men are seeded, and the first and second seed remain in the US Open. This will potentially set up a juicy first vs second seed match for the final, if Djokovic and Medvedev can successfully navigate their matches.
To be honest, all eyes are on Djokovic to see if he can not only take the record for himself at the most Grand Slam titles won, but also looks to win all four of the Grand Slams in a calendar year. Djokovic is just two matches away to this history breaking feat.
So, who will come out on top and make it through to the final? Have a read below at our tennis picks for the two semi final matches on the men’s side of the draw!
Felix Auger-Aliassime (12) vs Daniil Medvedev (2)
Felix Auger-Aliassime is looking to upset the second seed, Daniil Medvedev to make it all the way through to the final at the US Open. Auger-Aliassime has had a mixed tournament so far, and was required to dig deep in a number of matches to get the win. His greatest fight was in the third round, against Bautista Agut which when the distance. He caught a break in the quarterfinals, however, as young Spanish hot shot, Alcaraz, retired mid way through the second set. Medvedev has been in the form of his life so far, and up until the quarterfinals, he actually hadn’t dropped a set. It was in his previous match against van de Zandschulp that he dropped his first and only set to date.
The Canadian is currently at a career high ranking of 15th in the world. He is yet to win a Grand Slam title and will be looking to book his spot in the final at the US Open. He has played almost 15 hours on the courts so far at Flushing Meadows, which is a considerable amount more then Medvedev. Auger-Aliassime’s win-loss record for the 2021 season currently stands at 33-18, with the record on hard courts at 19-8. He would have had a lot of rest time between his quarter final and semi final match as Alcaraz retired mid way through the second set. The young Canadian will definitely need that extra time to get his body as right as it can be to take on a dominant Medvedev.
Daniil Medvedev is back in the #USOpen semi-finals for the third straight year!
He ends Van de Zandschulp’s amazing run 6-3 6-0 4-6 7-5 pic.twitter.com/n1g4zbYuls
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) September 7, 2021
Despite being ranked at career high, second in the world, Medvedev is yet to break through and win his first Grand Slam title. He has made good strides at Grand Slams throughout the past couple of years, but has always been in the shadow of the big three in Djokovic, Nadal and Federer. Medvedev is certainly expected to win this match, as he has in every match previously at the US Open, but he hasn’t let the pressure get to him. Medvedev was very proactive on first serves, with a win percentage of 83% when he made his first serve. He will be looking for more of the same in the semi, and if he can, he should make it all the way through to the final.
The pair have played once before and Medvedev leads that tally 1-0. They met on a hard court back in 2018, and it was a close one, with Medvedev winning the final set in a tiebreaker! Medvedev is looking really good, but hasn’t really come across a top tier of opponents which would have required him to lift his game. This will by far be the toughest test for Medvedev all tournament, and we think Auger-Aliassime can give the Russian a run for his money. Both players have a fairly aggressive style of play, suited to the hard courts of the US Open. It has been the serve of Auger-Aliassime that has helped up throughout his previous matched, but were he will be let down is his return of serve, and if Medvedev serves the way he normally does, the Russian will book his place in the final.
Novak Djokovic (1) vs Alexander Zverev (4)
The world number one, Novak Djokovic, has successfully navigated through to the yet another semi final at a Grand Slam, and is just two match wins away from creating history. Looking to make some history of his own is Alexander Zverev, who wants to make it to the final and attempt to win his first Grand Slam. The Serbs run to the semis hasn’t been as smooth as many would have expected, but he is doing enough to get the job done each match, and conserving his energy for the matches that count. Zverev had a pretty friendly draw and has only faced one seeded opponent up until now. He has had one five set game, one four set game, and three three set games to make it through to the semi final.
Djokovic has surprisingly only had one three set match so far the tournament and had dropped one set in all his other matches. He only faced a seeded player in his quarterfinal, in sixth seeded Berrettini. The Serb looks to be getting off to a slow start, as he lost the first set in three out of the four matches where he dropped a set. He will need to be careful as he is coming up against a much tougher opponent in Zverev, and if the German gets a foot hold in the match, he could be difficult to slow down. There is still no denying the form of Djokovic and he looks good enough to overcome any opponent.
Grand Slam titles won, 2021 #USOpen semifinalists:
Novak Djokovic- 2️⃣0️⃣
Daniil Medvedev- 0️⃣
Alexander Zverev- 0️⃣
Felix Auger-Aliassime- 0️⃣
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 9, 2021
The German is into his fourth major semi final and his second straight at the US Open. He is also currently on a 16 match winning streak, which just so happens to be the longest of his career to date. His overall win-loss record so far this season is currently sitting at 43-11, with his record on the hard court at 25-4. The 24 year old has been ranked as high as number three in the world, but is still yet to break through and win a Grand Slam. Much like Medvedev, the German has often performed well enough to go deep into the tournament at a Grand Slam, but is often overshadowed by the big three in Djokovic, Nadal and Federer. Zverev will have to overcome the mighty Djokovic is he wants to make it through to the final.
The pair have met each other a few times out on the court, nine to be exact, with Djokovic leading that tally, 6-3. When it comes to matches they have played against each other on the hard courts, Djokovic again has the upper hand, at 3-1. Zverev did win against Djokovic the last time they played, which was at the Tokyo Olympics, in three sets (best of three), but prior to that, Djokovic has won four straight meetings against the German in a row, with Djokovic only dropping one set in all four matched. We think this will be a difficult ask for Zverev, but considering the pressure Djokovic is under, and the amount of sets he has dropped this tournament against lesser opponents, we think this may well go to four or even five sets.
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*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.