Daniil Medvedev says he will never be a natural on clay, but he believes he can compensate for that with trial, error, and adjustments.
Medvedev has never made any secret of the fact clay is a tough surface for him, which is highlighted by the fact he is yet to win a single match at Roland Garros despite climbing to number two in the world rankings.
However, as he prepared for the Rome Masters this week, he seemed to be in positive mood and confident he is slowly becoming a better player on the red dirt.
“I’m never going to be like some Spanish players [on clay] that from when they are young they know: ‘Okay, I turn around the forehand, I spin the ball, I play high over the net, I make the ball bounce close to the line.’
“So I have to, with my shots that I know how to make work on hard courts, make small adjustments to make them work for clay.
“Physically, I need to improve and matches will help me. It’s about the small adjustments.”
Medvedev briefly showed some positive signs in Madrid, at least in terms of his desire to fight it out on clay if not the results.
He, though, believes he did okay, and he wasn’t helped by drawing two specialist clay player in Alejandro Davidovich Fokina and Christian Garin.
“If we talk about Madrid, of course in general the result I did there, I’m not happy, but I played against two really great clay-court players,” Medvedev said.
“I mean, Davidovich beat [Matteo] Berrettini in Monte-Carlo, and now Berrettini is in the final in Madrid. Cristian [Garin] was actually up a set and a break against Matteo, who is in the final of Madrid.
“[It] was two good matches, one that I managed to win, so [it] gives [me] some confidence.”
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