ROME (AP) — Nick Kyrgios took full advantage of his crafty game to eliminate Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 in the first round of the Italian Open on Tuesday.
For his first win on clay this year, Kyrgios was full of smiles as he fired aces and passing shots seemingly at will.
Kyrgios set the tone by serving underhand to start the match, catching Medvedev off guard. There were also a bevy of drop shots and even a successful through-the-legs effort.
“I was trying to throw him off his game because I knew he loves rhythm. He’s a great player,” Kyrgios said. “Today was a lot of fun. I thought the crowd was a lot of fun. It’s very important to go out there and put on a bit of a show.”
Medvedev played better after getting his lower back massaged after the first set but had no answer for Kyrgios’ wide array of shots in the third, prompting the frustrated Russian to break his racket by slamming it on the dirt.
Kyrgios won the final game at love by serving four straight aces. He had 15 aces in all.
Meanwhile, Serena Williams withdrew ahead of her second-round match against sister Venus because of a…