"Even with tantrums, mentally last four weeks have been amazing" - Daniil Medvedev opens up about handling emotions as he reaches Indian Wells final

Daniil Medvedev celebrates during his Indian Wells 2023 semi-final against Frances Tiafoe.
Daniil Medvedev celebrates during his Indian Wells 2023 semi-final against Frances Tiafoe.

Daniil Medvedev has experienced a roller-coaster of emotions on the court this week at Indian Wells, highlighted mainly by his multiple on-court outbursts expressing his dissent with the slow court conditions. At the same time, he is enjoying the form of his life. A 7-5, 7-6(4) win over Frances Tiafoe in the semifinals on Saturday was Medvedev's 19th consecutive victory on tour and put him within one win of four titles in four tournaments.

Despite his "tantrums," as Medvedev himself referred to his outbursts at Indian Wells this week, catching much of the attention, the world No. 6 is delighted with how he has been able to control a lot of things en route to his fourth consecutive final.

Shortly after successfully navigating a spirited fight from Tiafoe, the 27-year-old revealed how he has felt mentally this week and throughout his incredible ongoing winning streak.

"I feel like mentally in general, even with the, let's call it, tantrums that I had this week, in general mentally last four weeks have been amazing with its up-and-downs, of course," Daniil Medvedev said in a press conference on Saturday.

It will be even more important for Medvedev to be in control of his emotions and general proceedings in Sunday's Indian Wells final as he takes on an in-form Carlos Alcaraz.

"Yeah, I feel like it's getting better and better here, so hopefully tomorrow it's going to be even better," Medvedev added.

The former world No. 1 seemed to be least affected by the on-court conditions in the semifinal against Tiafoe, thus ensuring that he did not have a run-in with the chair umpire about the slowness of the court and was a lot more in control of his emotions.

However, he faced other challenges as Tiafoe saved as many as seven match points, including four on Medvedev's serve, before the second-set tiebreak. Converting those chances right when he had them is where Medvedev believes he could have done a better job on the day.

"Today it's true in a way I was on top of my, let's call it, bad emotions, negative emotions like frustration and stuff," he continued. "But finally when you don't realize that many match points means that somewhere I was not on top of my emotions where I had to finish the match.

Having said that, he looked at the situation in a more positive light. He stressed that he was able to put the disappointment of relinqusihing seven match points behind himself sooner rather than later, and dominate the tiebreak to win the match in straight sets, thus highlighting his mental fortitude.

"But in a way, that makes me even happier mentally that I still managed to win, because try playing a tiebreak when you just lost seven match points, and I managed to start it well straightaway doing great shots and great rallies," Medvedev explained.

"Whatever, doesn't matter; I'm going to try to win again" - Daniil Medvedev reveals thought process after losing multiple match points

Daniil Medvedev competes against Frances Tiafoe at Indian Wells 2023.
Daniil Medvedev competes against Frances Tiafoe at Indian Wells 2023.

Daniil Medvedev also threw light on his immediate thoughts after seeing seven match points slip by him ahead of the second-set tiebreak. For the 2020 US Open champion, it was more difficult to stay in control as Tiafoe even had the crowd behind him as he mounted a comeback. Medvedev quickly reminded himself that he was playing at a high level and just had to keep at it.

Despite the setback, he was confident in his ability to win without the need for a deciding set.

"Well, first of all, the only thing you can say is - and the crowd goes crazy, for sure, for him. The only thing I was saying to myself was, like, Whatever, doesn't matter. I'm going to try to win again. That's the first thing," Daniil Medvedev said.
"And at the same time, you're like, Damn, you're saying this to yourself, like Damn, that's tough. I lost so many match points, I just have to somehow put myself to together and just stay with my game because I was playing great."

Daniil Medvedev faces Carlos Alcaraz in Sunday's Indian Wells final in what will be only their second clash so far on tour. Earlier, Medvedev won their second-round contest at 2021 Wimbledon. Alcaraz beat Jannik Sinner 7-6(4), 6-3 in the other semi-final at Indian Wells.

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Edited by Aayush Majumdar
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