Daniil Medvedev sent Novak Djokovic packing from the 2019 Monte-Carlo Masters in their quarter-final on Friday.
The top seeded Djokovic came back strongly in the second set but failed to match up to Medvedev in the match, going down in three sets, 3-6, 6-4, 2-6.
Djokovic looked a pale shadow of his superb self from the times he had gone on a victory spree and won his three previous Grand Slams back to back and was broken in the very first game of the match. Medvedev led 3-1 and was 40-0 up on the Serb’s serve but Djokovic managed to hold on.
However, that did not prevent Medvedev from racing off through the set and winning it, with Djokovic having bit of a chance in the eighth game and then dropped his serve yet again in the ninth.
The second set threatened to get away from him again when Medvedev took his serve to deuce in the second game but Djokovic held on and then broke his opponent in the very next game. It turned out to be a crucial break of serve with both players then managing to hold on to their respective serve, allowing Djokovic to level the match at a set apiece.
But just when one thought Djokovic was coming into his own and gearing up to romp past Medvedev, it was all over for him. He held his service in the first game but was soon broken to go 3-1 down. Medvedev held on in the fifth game and then crashed any remaining Djokovic hopes to take a 5-1 lead in the set by breaking the Serb yet again.
Djokovic got back one break but lost his serve yet again to go down in three sets.
This came after Djokovic had been stretched to three sets by Philipp Kohlschreiber in his second round match at the Monte-Carlo Masters following an opening bye but then crushed Taylor Fritz 6-3, 6-0 to make it to the quarter-final.
Djokovic has had an up and down year so far, looking almost invincible at the Australian Open to clinch his third Grand Slam title in a row but running into major roadblocks at the Indian Wells and Miami Masters.
In the semi-final, Medvedev will now take on another Serb in the form of Dusan Lajovic, who beat Italian qualifier Lorenzo Sonego, while Boran Coric plays Fabio Fognini and Rafael Nadal faces Guido Pella in the remaining two quarter-finals of the day.