Vasek Pospisil battled hard but couldn’t follow up his win over Félix Auger-Aliassime on Wednesday with a victory over World No. 6 Daniil Medvedev on Thursday. The Canadian fell 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 to the Russian, who will now face Kevin Anderson of South Africa in the quarter-finals of the Erste Bank Open in Vienna.
Heading into their match, Pospisil and Medvedev had faced each other just twice previously. The Russian came out on top in their first meeting – a 7-6(7), 7-5 victory in Shanghai in 2019 – while Pospisil was the winner in their most recent clash – a 6-4, 6-3 triumph in Rotterdam earlier this year.
In Vienna, a huge backhand from Pospisil early in the first set gifted him two breakpoint opportunities. The first was thwarted by Medvedev thanks to a powerful ace, while Pospisil hit a shot long on the second meaning it went deuce. The 30-year-old from Vancouver quickly regained the advantage, though, and hit a sumptuous backhand down the line to claim the match’s first break.
Medvedev wasn’t prepared to go down without a fight. He won his next service game to love and then forced deuce as Pospisil was serving for the set. The Canadian showed great resilience, though, to emerge unscathed as he clinched the first set 6-4 thanks to a 208 km/hr ace on the final point.
The second set was a different story as Medvedev came out with renewed confidence. He would convert that into a break of Pospisil’s serve in the eighth game as he forced the Canadian into hitting a forehand into the net. From that position, he made no mistake in levelling up the match at a set apiece.
A shoot-out of a third set then ensued as both players showed their desire to reach the quarter-finals. Pospisil, a qualifier, did well to fend off Medvedev on his first service game but he couldn’t do so on the second as the Russian went ahead a break after the Canadian hit a forehand wide.
Medvedev repeated the trick to go 4-1 ahead, and it was a lead he wouldn’t relinquish as he secured a 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 victory. He will now face Anderson in the quarter-finals on Friday. The South African beat Pablo Carreno-Busta of Spain 7-5, 6-1 in his round of 16 match.