After claiming his first clay title at the Italian Open in 2023, Daniil Medvedev attributes his success to using new strings.

After claiming his first clay title at the Italian Open in 2023, Daniil Medvedev attributes his success to using new strings.

CNN  — 

After emerging victorious at the Italian Open, Daniil Medvedev shared that one factor contributing to his outstanding performance this year is his switch to new racket strings.

The second-ranked Russian player has switched to a new type of Technifbre strings and has experienced a remarkable improvement in his game since making the change before the Australian Open.

This year, he has achieved five titles, which is the most he has ever won in his career. On Sunday, he won the Italian Open final against Denmark’s Holger Rune with a score of 7-5 7-5, earning his first clay court trophy.

According to Medvedev, the strings assist him in his game as they are softer and allow for easier ball handling. He made this statement after defeating Rune in a match.

“In Australia, when I lost, my coach and I were impressed by my ability to easily control the ball. It was a great feeling.”

“In Australia, my previous methods were unsuccessful. I had serious doubts about my abilities. Should I revert to my old ways, which had been working well for me? However, I decided to push forward and try new approaches. The results have been astounding.”

Medvedev lifts the Italian Open trophy after defeating Rune.

Following a delay of one hour and 40 minutes caused by rain in Rome, Medvedev persevered through a close first set against Rune. He saved two break points at 2-2 and then seized the crucial break at 6-5 by quickly approaching the net and attacking a drop shot.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 18: Rafael Nadal of Spain looks on in their round two singles match against Mackenzie McDonald of the United States during day three of the 2023 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 18, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

On January 18, 2023, in Melbourne, Australia, Rafael Nadal from Spain watches as he competes against Mackenzie McDonald from the United States in the second round of the Australian Open. The match takes place at Melbourne Park and is captured by photographer Cameron Spencer. Unfortunately, Nadal has announced his withdrawal from the 2023 French Open due to an injury and has stated that the following year will be his final year in the competition.

At the age of 20, Rune made two breaks in the second set to gain a 5-3 advantage. However, Medvedev then demonstrated his strong baseline skills and went on to secure the victory by winning the next four games.

At the Italian Open, 27-year-old Medvedev’s victory on clay is a significant achievement, especially since he has primarily won titles on hard courts, including his 2021 US Open triumph.

After Rafael Nadal dropped out of the French Open last week, it is challenging to anticipate the outcome of the second major tennis tournament of the year, as top-ranked player Carlos Alcaraz and 22-time grand slam winner Novak Djokovic are the frontrunners in the men’s singles bracket.

However, Medvedev, who has yet to advance past the quarterfinals at Roland Garros, will likely be optimistic. He faced tough opponents such as Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev during his successful run at the Italian Open and has risen five spots in the men’s rankings this year.

Medvedev (left) and Rune shake hands after the Italian Open final.

He exclaimed that this victory was extraordinary because he never thought he would be able to achieve it.

“I am still having trouble believing that I played so well this week and won. It’s not the fact that I won, but the level of play I achieved. I am truly grateful and happy to have this trophy with me at home.”

From May 28 to June 11, the French Open will be held and Medvedev, with his powerful ground strokes, is now considered a top contender.