MELBOURNE, January 25: World number four Daniil Medvedev eased past Alexei Popyrin in straight sets on Saturday to set up a last-16 clash with former Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka.
The tall Russian had few problems dispatching the unseeded Australian 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 on Rod Laver Arena as he steps up his quest for a maiden Grand Slam crown.
“I knew it was not going to be easy and happy to win in straight sets,” said Medvedev, insisting he had no expectations in Melbourne.
“(But) of course every time no matter what tournament I’m super disappointed (if I lose).
“Hopefully I can win seven matches here, but very tough.” He now plays experienced 2014 champion Wawrinka after the Swiss got an easy ride through his clash against John Isner, with the American retiring injured while losing 6-4, 6-1. Wawrinka, a former world number three who has never returned to his best since knee surgery in 2017, said he was happy to be in the second week of a Slam once again.
“I think I was playing well again today,” he said. “I was really happy the way I was moving, the way I was playing. (AFP)