Defending champion Daniil Medvedev was kicked out of the Canadian Open by Nick Kyrgios as the Australian continued his impressive form in Montreal on Wednesday.
After claiming a first ATP singles title in three years by winning the Citi Open in Washington DC last weekend, Kyrgios earned a major scalp as he fought back to defeat world number one Medvedev in straight sets, 6- 7 (2), 6 -4, 6-2.
Medvedev, 26, came into the match having won his own title at the Los Cabos Open in Mexico, but came second in a two-hour clash at the ATP Masters 1000 event.
The loss means Medvedev will see his lead atop the ATP rankings shrink when he is updated on Monday.
The Cincinnati Masters is next, and while world number two Alexander Zverev remains sidelined through injury, number three Rafael Nadal has said he will return after skipping Canada as a precaution, which marks a threat to Medvedev’s status.
Kyrgios, meanwhile, has won 14 of his last 15 singles matches, with his only loss to Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final last month.
“I had a very clear goal of how I was going to play, lots of serve and volley, lots of aggressive play from the back,” Kyrgios spoke about his victory over Medvedev.
“I executed better than him, that’s all. He won the first set and I feel like I had opportunities there too, so hopefully I can continue like that.
The 27-year-old Australian improved his head-to-head record against Medvedev to 3-1 as the Moscow-born star regretted his missed chances.
“For me, today, the biggest difference is that I missed shots at certain important moments”, said Medvedev.
“I didn’t miss much, but I missed a few where I think it could be different maybe in the last stage of a tournament. It’s a shame. At the same time, eh well, that’s how it is.
Kyrgios – so often prone to outbursts on the pitch – remained focused despite dropping out of the first set.
“He was great. He was playing well. He beat me enough, if you can put it that way,” Medvedev added.
Medvedev’s loss was one of many shocks in Montreal as each of the top three seeds left the tournament.
Second seed Carlos Alcaraz of Spain was dropped by American Tommy Paul, while third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece was beaten by British underdog Jack Draper.
The losing streak makes it the first time a Masters 1000 event has seen the top three seeds lose all of their opening matches since Indian Wells in 1999.
As Medvedev turns his attention to Cincinnati next week, the biggest target on the horizon remains defending his US Open title when action begins in New York on August 29.
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