Paris, May 26 (IANS): World No 2 Daniil Medvedev advanced to the third round of the French Open after beating Serbia's Laslo Djere 6-3, 6-4, 6-3, here on Thursday.
The 26-year-old, who eliminated Facundo Bagnis in the first round, was resilient against Djere throughout their two-hour, 36-minute clash on Court Philippe Chatrier. Medvedev soaked up the World No 56's powerful forehand as he scampered around the baseline, while he turned the tables in points by standing deep in the court and taking large cuts at the ball.
"Today I think to be honest, Laslo was playing better clay-court tennis. But I managed to fight and just put one more ball in the court than him and it was a very tough match, but I am happy to win," said Medvedev.
Following his win, Medvedev has leveled his ATP Head to Head series with Djere at 1-1 and will next face Miomir Kecmanovic after the 28th seed defeated Alexander Bublik 4-6, 7-5, 6-2, 6-1.
Medvedev, who is still searching for his first title of the season, will return to No 1 in the ATP Rankings if he reaches the final in Paris. However, not until June 13, a week after the tournament ends, when ranking points from last year's edition of Roland Garros drop.
The World No 2 recovered from losing his serve in the first game of the match by rolling off five straight games from 0-2 to take control. Medvedev was content to soak up pressure with his flat groundstrokes and found first serves when it mattered, saving break points in the seventh and ninth games to move ahead.
Medvedev continued to find his range in the second set as he outlasted the Serbian in the longer exchanges, with Djere unable to capitalise on his chances. The Russian then won a 16-minute game to break the 26-year-old at the start of the third set before he raced away to victory as he drew further errors from the Serbian, who started to tire.
Djere, who defeated Ricardas Berankis in his opening match, was aiming to reach the third round at Roland Garros for the third time, having advanced to that stage in 2019 and 2021.