Everybody was giving the match to Alcatraz, but Medvedev learned the Traz lesson…depth and pace. Traz is deadly from the half court but keep it deep and he becomes a different player. He also found a way from exceptionally far behind the baseline to force Traz to volley up.
Medvedev played at a fast pace, hardly pausing between serves…I think that unsettled Traz.
He also held his nerve ….serving for the match, down 15/40 he kept attacking, going for a 126 mile per hour second serve on match point. And then having double faulted giving Traz a game point, he settled down and secured the win with a massive forehand up the line.
Traz will leave this with a few scars…life isn’t a script just written for him. Next time he is in that position there will be more doubts.
Watching Shelton and Traz today the differences are quite stark. Traz is much more developed…a better volleyer and drop shot artist….a better tactician. But Shelton has so much more power without the poppy muscles that will always be a risk for Traz. He is well behind today but with much more improvement potential. Shelton effortlessly serves in the mid one thirties, McEnroe said today he is the biggest server he has seen.
He probably needs a better coaching team and complete dedication. Is an American kid of this generation willing to put in the effort? Even if he doesn’t Traz will be facing many talented youngsters in the years ahead,
But I hope the whole carnival show of grunting, fist pumping, posing and loud Spanish coaching gets toned down. It’s unattractive and detracts from Alcaraz’s game and otherwise good sportsmanship.
In the meantime we have a final featuring probably the two best players in the game right now, with similar styles. Medvedev upset the Djokovic Grand Slam a few years back. He won’t be any easier to beat on Sunday.