Daniil Medvedev Intrudes on the Big Four’s No. 1 Perch
During his quarterfinal victory over Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada at the Australian Open, a fan at Rod Laver Arena shouted, “Do it for Ukraine, Felix!”
But Medvedev has spoken out against the war since it began on Feb. 24.
“By being a tennis player I want to promote peace all over the world,” he said in Acapulco. “We play in so many different countries. I’ve been in so many countries as a junior and as a pro.”
He added: “It’s just not easy to hear all this news. I’m all for peace.”
Medvedev’s next tournament is scheduled to be next month’s BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, where some players are already planning to show support for Ukraine by wearing outfits that feature blue and yellow, the colors of Ukraine’s national flag.
On Sunday, just hours before he officially became the No. 1-ranked men’s singles player, Medvedev made another plea, this time on social media.
“Today I want to speak on behalf of every kid in the world,” he said. “They all have dreams. Their life is just starting, so many nice experiences to come: first friends, first great emotions. Everything they feel and see is for the first time in their lives. That’s why I want to ask for peace in the world, for peace between countries. Kids are born with inner trust in the world, they believe so much in everything: in people, in love, in safety and justice, in their chances in life. Let’s be together and show them that it’s true, cause every kid shouldn’t stop dreaming.”
Medvedev, like many leading Russian players, moved abroad in his teens to further his tennis career. While his Russian contemporaries Andrey Rublev, 24, and Karen Khachanov, 25, landed in Spain, Medvedev went to southern France and now lives in Monte Carlo, long a sunny and tax-friendly base for tennis stars.
He has been coached by the Frenchman Gilles Cervara since 2016 and speaks fluent French and English — useful skills in a global sport with post-match news conferences and interviews.