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Ricky’s Best Tennis Matches of 2019: Dominic Thiem, Daniil Medvedev, And Stefanos Tsitsipas • Compiled For 10sBalls

By Ricky Dimon

The 2019 season on the men’s side did not signal any kind of changing of the guard or passing of the torch. Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, and Roger Federer–yes, those same guys that dominated the top of the rankings as far back as a decade ago–once again finished one-two-three.

What this past season did, though, is set the table for what should be a wildly 2020 campaign–and perhaps even beyond 2020. There is no longer any doubt that Dominic Thiem, Daniil Medvedev, and Stefanos Tsitsipas are coming. How fast they are coming in terms of winning major titles remains to be seen, but each one is storming into next season with huge confidence.

If Nadal, Djokovic, and Federer are the Big 3, are Thiem, Medvedev, and Tsitsipas the Next 3? Only time will tell, but for now Ricky takes a look back on those three’s 2019 highlights and best matches (not necessarily their best performances, but the best matches in which they were involved–win or lose).

Dominic Thiem

Thiem gets an A for his brilliant efforts in 2019, and he was arguably one win away on a few different occasions from upgrading that to an A+. The Austrian understandably lost the French Open final to Nadal and suffered a heartbreaker against Tsitsipas in the Nitto ATP Finals title match. But he completely transformed himself on hard courts, including his biggest-ever triumph in Indian Wells.

Best matches:

Indian Wells F: Thiem d. Roger Federer 3-6, 6-3, 7-5

Madrid QF: Thiem d. Roger Federer 3-6, 7-6(11), 6-4

French Open SF: Thiem d. Novak Djokovic 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 7-5

French Open F: Nadal d. Dominic Thiem 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1

Vienna F: Thiem d. Diego Schwartzman 3-6, 6-4, 6-3

Nitto ATP Finals RR: Thiem d. Novak Djokovic 6-7(5), 6-3, 7-6(5)

Nitto ATP Finals F: Stefanos Tsitsipas d. Thiem 6-7(6), 6-2, 7-6(4)

Daniil Medvedev

Medvedev’s summer will live in both fame and infamy. While reach an unbelievable six consecutive finals, he became the villain of the U.S. Open for admittedly poor behavior directed at the fans. By the time he was staging a comeback against Nadal in the final, however, the Russian had turned himself into the crowd favorite. It was an amazing transformation, and the same can be said of his tennis 2019. Medvedev ran out of gas at the end, but he still gets an A+.

Best matches:

Australian Open R4: Novak Djokovic d. Medvedev 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-2, 6-3

Monte-Carlo QF: Medvedev d. Novak Djokovic 6-3, 4-6, 6-2

Barcelona SF: Medvedev d. Kei Nishikori 6-4, 3-6, 7-5

Wimbledon R3: David Goffin d. Medvedev 4-6, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3, 7-5

Cincinnati SF: Medvedev d. Novak Djokovic 3-6, 6-3, 6-3

U.S. Open R3: Medvedev d. Feliciano Lopez 7-6(1), 4-6, 7-6(7), 6-4

U.S. Open F: Rafael Nadal d. Medvedev 7-5, 6-3, 5-7, 4-6, 6-4

Nitto ATP Finals RR: Rafael Nadal d. Medvedev 6-7(3), 6-3, 7-6(4)

Stefanos Tsitipas

Let’s go with an A- for Tsitsipas. It’s not better than that because the Greek lost in the first round of two straight slams (Wimbledon and the U.S. Open), part of a dreadful post-French Open slump. But he bounced back impressively, delivering a stellar fall swing capped off by what was BY FAR  the biggest title of his career at the Nitto ATP Finals. Tsitsipas’ love for the big stage bodes well for slam titles in the future–maybe even not-too-distant future.

Best matches:

Australian Open R4: Stefanos Tsitsipas d. Federer 6-7(11), 7-6(3), 7-5, 7-6(5)

Dubai SF: Tsitsipas d. Gael Monfils 4-6, 7-6(4), 7-6(4)

Miami R4: Denis Shapovalov d. Tsitsipas 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(3)

French Open R4: Stan Wawrinka d. Tsitsipas 7-6(6), 5-7, 6-4, 3-6, 8-6

Washington SF: Nick Kyrgios d. Tsitsipas 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(7)

Nitto ATP Finals RR: Rafael Nadal d. Tsitsipas 6-7(4), 6-4, 7-5

Nitto ATP Finals F: Tsitsipas d. Dominic Thiem 6-7(6), 6-2, 7-6(4)

Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.

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