Medjedovic tops Fils, wins Next Gen Finals title

Tennis

JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia — Hamad Medjedovic squandered two match points before he finally upset the top-seeded Arthur Fils and won the Next Gen Finals championship match on Saturday.

It was the first five-set final in six editions of the tournament.

Medjedovic missed the chance to seal it in four but converted his third match point in the fifth to beat Fils 3-4 (6), 4-1, 4-2, 3-4 (9), 4-1 after two hours, 11 minutes.

The 20-year-old Medjedovic did not lose a match on his way to becoming the first Serbian to win the tournament for the top eight players aged 21 or under.

The tournament was held in Saudi Arabia for the first time after it was played in Milan ever since the inaugural edition in 2017. Besides shorter sets, other changes to the usual tennis rules included shorter changeovers and less time on the shot clock for some points.

“I can’t believe I have won this title, but it’s going to give me a lot of confidence for 2024,” said Medjedovic, the lowest-ranked champion yet at No. 110.

The 36th-ranked Fils became the youngest Frenchman in nearly two decades to win an ATP title when he triumphed at Lyon this year.

Medjedovic, who is coached by Serbia Davis Cup captain Viktor Troicki, reached tour-level semifinals in Gstaad and Astana and won three lower-level Challengers this year.

Past Next Gen champions include Stefanos Tsitsipas, Jannik Sinner and Carlos Alcaraz.

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