He says he’s happy with his form and is finding it easier to get up with the crowd, but the aim is to win and that doesn’t change whether they’re there or not. He’s usually in Rotterdam for his birthday, but it’s more serious here and he’s got his presents from his wife, but otherwise he’s doing nothing. Had he lost, he’d have gone out celebrating – what a strange life – but he didn’t. These things are sent to test us.
Medvedev beats Carballes Baena 6-3 7-5 6-1!
He finishes with a love hold which he finishes with an ace – happy birthday and all that. He’s a proper player, and meets Krajinovic (28) next. He’s a proper threat, and I’d not back anyone to beat him.
Carballes Baena has given this everything but there’s nothing he can do, and at 30-40 he sends down an almost apologetic double fault, giving Medvedev the chance to serve for the match. Carballes Baena 2-6 5-7 1-5 Medvedev
Norrie has had a load of break points but Safiullin is hanging in there well. He leads 3-2 in the fourth but Norrie leads by two sets to one.
Break-point up, Medvedev hammers a backhand return that sends Carballes Baena chasing into the corner, quickly clearing up his retrieval; this is very nearly over. He’s played well tonight/this morning, and quickly wins three more points as his opponent exhales deeply, acknowledging the inevitability of it all. A second serve into the body follows, then a decisive volley, and off they go for a sit. Carballes Baena 2-6 5-7 1-4 Medvedev
Nadal is serving for the second set and opens up with an ace before some kind of disturbance in the crowd brings a halt to proceedings. I had eyes on Medvedev at the time – he’s just made it 2-1 in set three – but I’m guessing it involved nakedness. Nadal indulges in some keepy-uppy, then promptly canes down two aces. He’s quite good. Mmoh 1-6 4-6 Nadal
Medvedev opens set three with a love-hold, secured with an ace, while Nadal leads 5-3 in set two and Norrie has just failed to take two break-points from Safiullin in set four. He earns another though … and Safiullin saves another … and another, before finally holding. Norrie 3-6 7-5 6-3 1-2 Safiullin
Yeah, a leaping forehand gives Medvedev 0-30 and Carballes Baena can’t take the pressure, sending down a double that gives his opponent three set points. He only needs one, a terrific point sending his man scurrying from wing to wing retrieving a succession of huge shots, before a forehand volley – applied to a ball that looked to be dropping out – secures the set. Carballes Baena will be demoralised because that set was about as well as he can play against so good an opponent, and where’s it got him? Carballes Baena 2-6 5-7 Medvedev
Nadal has consolidated easily, leading Mmomh 6-1 4-2. And on Court, Norrie and Safiullin are about to resume.
At 5-5 and 15-all, Medvedev finds a monstrous serve; of course he does, but at 40-15 Carballes Baena sends a big forehand to the backhand corner and races to the net to clean up. A double follows, and for the first time, Medvedev is under pressure, on deuce and about to send down a second serve. And what a brute it is! There’s nothing Carballes Baena can do about that, nor about the serve and smash which follow. He’ll now serve to stay in set two.
Medvedev is back into it, panelling his way to 15-30, but Carballes Baena fights back well to hold. Thing is, everything it causing him aggravation, and you’d not back him in a breaker if that’s what eventuates. Carballes Baena 2-6 5-5 Medvedev
Nadal fights his way to two break points and a serve into the net means he’ll do it off a second. Mmoh puts plenty on it, sending yerman out wide, but he responds well with a forehand and Mmoh goes well long. Mmoh 1-6 2-3 Nadal
Medvedev holds easily enough, and once they’ve had a little sit-down we’ll discover whether there’s been any serious momentum change, because Carballes Baena will serve to stay in the second set.
Well! I did not see this coming, but Carballes Baena has just held to love with the help of a net-cord which got him underway; Medvedev, meanwhile, is grousing at the umpire. We’re back on serve in set two, while on Laver, Nadal and Mmoh are 2-2, Nadal having won the first 6-1.
On Court, Pegula has beaten Stosur 6-0 6-1 and meets Mladenovic next. Norrie and Safiullin will now move to complete their match under the roof, with the Scot leading 3-6 7-5 6-3 1-1.
Mmoh isn’t going away and holds to 15, taking the lead in set two, while Carballes Baena holds as well but trails 2-4. He gets 0-15 too, but Medvedev simply cleanses a a forehand down the middle. But have a look! He wins the next two points and that’s two break-back points … the first saved by way of murderous forehands, the second via big serve; every time he thinks he’s back in, he’s puuuuushed all the way back out. But when they get to deuce, he gets a break point on a second serve, and this time Medvedev can’t retort, sending a forehand fractionally wide! Carballes Baena 2-6 3-4 Medvedev
But here comes Carballes Baena, getting to 0-30 … to be sent two horrendous services, one out wide then one down the middle. Enjoy! Very quickly, Madvedev consolidates the break, and there’s not a lot to be done about this. Carballes Baena has been looking up at his coach, but there’s not much he’s got to offer; sorry chap! Medvedev is brilliant and playing really well. Carballes Baena 2-6 1-4 Medvedev
Nadal rushes through another hold, that topspin forehand – you may be familiar with it – forcing Mmoh to net. Mmoh 1-6 Nadal
Nadal is all over Mmoh and breaks him a second time for 5-1; meanwhile, Medvedev is giving Carballes Baena far more than he can handle, absolutely flying into his forehands and forcing a tame backhand slice that earns him the break. Carballes Baena 2-6 1-3 Medvedev
Pegula has bageled Stosur and leads 2-0 in the in set two. That match is not long for this tournament.
Caruso (in white) and Fognini exchange Italian at the end of their five-set thriller.
Medvedev, who looks a lot like Jamie from Eastenders is really feeling himself, a colossal backhand down the line cementing a love hold. Everything Carballes Baena tries, he’s returning and then some, and though the Spaniard holds his first service game of the second set – after a succession of deuces – it feels like a break is in the post. Norrie and Safiullin, meanwhile, are still waiting for the rain to abate, while Nadal has broken Mmoh to lead 3-1. .
Mmoh is looking comfy out there, finding a pair of aces in his first service game. Mmoh 1-1 Nadal
On Court, Pegula has won the first four games against Stosur. The former US Open champ is 36 now, but I doubt she’s any more relaxed about losing than when she was at her peak.
Medvedev is flowing now, two gigantic forehands giving him 0-30, quickly converted into three set points. Carballes Baena has nothing for him and knows it, waving a tame drop shot into the net, and that’s the end of that. Carballes Baena 2-6 Medvedev
Medvedev is all over Carballes Baena now, leading 5-2 in set one, while Nadal loses the first point of his first service game before ramming a forehand wide at 40-15. But a big serve forces a forehand into the net, and Nadal leads 1-0.
If Nadal can win here, he’ll become the first man in the open era to win each slam twice. It feels peculiar to type this, but that seems unlikely; he’ll likely have to beat either Tsitsipas or Khachanov the round after next, and I’d not expect him to beat whichever of Djokovic or Thiem he ended up playing in the final. Anyway, off we go.
Nadal and Mmoh are knocking up; Mmoh had to qualify then come back from 1-2 down to beat Victor Troicki in five sets, the match featuring four breakers and a 7-5. He might be grooved, he might be knackered.
Yup, Medvedev breaks back, as we learn that Norrie won’t return to his match against Safiullin for at least another 20 minutes. Carballes Baena 2-2 Medvedev
I’m a big fan of Medvedev, who I’m sure will win majors – maybe starting with this one. But he’s been broken early in set one, trailing Carballes Baena 1-2.
Mats has just said Gauff was “very active when the Black Lives Matter movement was happening”; it’s still happening, old mate. otherwise, he reckons Gauff needs to relax and play a simpler game.
On Cain, Carballes Banea and Medvedev (4) are underway; Medvedev held in the first game.
Svito says it was a high-quality match, and she’s pleased with how she played, taking her opportunities to break. She’s told she was efficient, but says the main thing she took was energy – from the crowd, saying how much joy it’s giving her to play in front of people. The interviewer must be a mate of her coach, Andrew Bettles, because he pushes her to praise him which she does, noting that she’s not easy and he’s very good with her. She’s looking forward to meeting Putintseva, who is also not entirely easy.
Funny game, tennis. Gauff looked the better player with the better shots, but Svitolina’s timing was better.
Svitolina beats Gauff 6-4 6-3!
Second set: Gauff 4-6 3-6 Svitolina* Tennis is an easy sport to fix because you can play well, lose a handful of big points and lose the match, which is what’s happening to Gauff here. Svitolina has played the big points really well, and a superb backhand, not hit as hard as Gauff hits hers but with pinpoint accuracy, gives her 30-0. A long rally follows … and Guaff finds a tremendous backhand from the middle of the baseline to break the sideline! She’s got a sniff! But a sniff is all it is because a big serve raises two match points and one is all that’s required, a huge forehand, a leaping volley, and Gauff can’t retrieve! That was a high-quality match, but Gauff couldn’t stay calm enough at the key moments, so it never quite sparked as we’d hoped. Svito plays Putintseva (26) next.