NEW YORK, Aug 30: Daniil Medvedev says he is not feeling the "extra pressure" of being the defending US Open champion after easing to a 6-2, 6-4, 6-0 victory over Stefan Kozlov of the US in the first round.
The Russian won the first grand slam title of his career last year when he defeated Novak Djokovic at Flushing Meadows, and started his defence in dominant fashion on Arthur Ashe Stadium on Monday, reports DPA. The world number one broke American outsider Kozlov eight times in a one-sided encounter in New York, in which he struck 37 winners and committed 19 unforced errors.
Top seed Medvedev does not feel burdened by being the man who won the final major of the year in 2021.
"(There is) a little bit (of) extra pressure (in being the defending champion)," he stated, "But mostly, I don't feel it, to be honest. Probably the only pressure is I know if I'm not going to play good here, for whatever reason... I will not care that I won it last year, I will just be disappointed that this year did not work out my way."
Medvedev will face Arthur Rinderknech of France next on Wednesday, after the Frenchman defeated his compatriot Quentin Halys in four sets on day one. IANS
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