Russian star Daniil Medvedev had a perfect start in the ongoing ATP World Tour Finals as he defeated Alexander Zverev in straight sets by 6-3, 6-4 in the group stage. Medvedev cruised to a convincing win but his underarm serve in the second set made headlines.
Mostly underarm serve is regarded as disrespectful to the opponent but Medvedev revealed that it was not done with an intention to make a mockery of Zverev as he was serving at 30-all and not 40-love. The Russain was up by a break and came up with a cheeky serve.
Medvedev said after the match, “I didn’t do it at 40-Love on my serve just to laugh and to mock him. I did it at 30-All to win the point, to win the match. That was the case, and that worked. I see nothing disrespectful about it.”
On the other hand, the lanky player also revealed why he used the underarm serve. Medvedev noticed that Zverev was standing too much behind the baseline and thus he decided to go for the underarm serve as he thought it would be difficult for his opponent to reach it.
However, Zverev was quick to react and got to the ball but Daniil Medvedev had the last laugh as he sealed the point.
Medvedev revealed that he decided to go for underarm serve in the heat of the match and it was not preplanned.
“Here it was just in the moment, I saw him really far back. I was thinking, ‘Okay, where do I go?’ I [was] like, ‘He’s so far. He’s going to have trouble’. He actually made a good shot to bring it back, but I managed to win the point, and that’s the most important. I won’t be doing this often, I think.” Medvedev said.
“No, I was not planning it at all. I can do it sometimes, let’s say, once a week, twice, once in two weeks in practice, just maybe a first serve to start, to laugh with my opponent or something like this.”
Meanwhile, underarm serve is legal in Tennis but it is regarded to be against the spirit of the game by many pundits just like Mankading in Cricket. Medvedev will now face the World No. 1 Novak Djokovic on November 19.