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In 2022 we had some absolutely epic Grand Slam encounters, with narratives aplenty emerging from tennis’ four blue ribboned tournaments.

Here are the top three men’s Grand Slam matches of the year that captured the attention of the world.

3 - Australian Open QF - Daniil Medvedev def. Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-7 3-6 7-6 7-5 6-4

This contest was mesmerising on a plethora of levels, with Felix Auger-Aliassime in his third straight major quarterfinal off the back of strong Wimbledon and US Open campaigns in 2021, and Medvedev the tournament favourite with the deportation of Novak Djokovic.

With the duo meeting in the US Open semifinal last year, the Canadian came out with a score to settle and won an epic opening set in a tiebreak, before breaking the Russian in the second as he took a two set buffer into the third.

Many around the globe were picturing the coming of age moment for the then 22-year-old, and when the third set went to a tiebreak he was just a game away from history.

However, Medvedev showed why he was the US Open champion and contesting for the World No.1 ranking and claimed the breaker as both started the fourth in fine fashion.

When serving at 4-5 down, the Russian managed to save a match point, letting out a huge raw as he held to level the set before catching Auger-Aliassime off guard and breaking his serve immediately.

It was a nervy twelfth game, but Medvedev was able to hold on and force a deciding set with his fourth set point.

From then on he looked in control, breaking early in the fifth and taking an epic contest that lasted a whopping four hours and 42 minutes.

2 - US Open QF - Carlos Alcaraz def. Jannik Sinner 63 67 67 75 63

If one was asked to describe this match with one word, it would be impossible.

It was absolutely bonkers.

The contest spanned five hours and 15 minutes, 11 minutes shy of the all time record at Flushing Meadows, and ended up being the latest finish in US Open history at 2:50am.

When Alcaraz had the advantage, Sinner came back and vice versa, the shot making was sublime and the determination was unparalleled.

It got pundits from all corners of the earth thinking about the matches that the pair will produce over the next decade, it’s almost salivating to think about.

Alcaraz took the first and looked as though he would claim the second, boasting numerous opportunities to take a two-sets-to-love lead, but the Italian was not to be denied and somehow clinched it from him.

The third was just as brutal, with Sinner taking an exquisite tiebreak without blemishing a single point.

In the fourth it would be the Italian breaking serve and subsequently holding a match point at 5-4 before his Spanish counterpart saved it and reeled off the three consecutive games to force the clash to a fifth.

Sinner looked undeterred however, as he broke early in the fifth, but to no avail as Alcaraz stormed back to claim the victory before going on to clinch his maiden Grand Slam and become the youngest ever World No.1.

Australian Open F - Rafael Nadal def. Daniil Medvedev 2-6 6-7 6-4 6-4 7-5

History making, that is how this match will be defined for eternity.

Rafa was almost no chance at the Australian Open, with a debilitating foot injury keeping him out of tennis for four months.

He managed to win the Melbourne Summer Set tournament leading into the Australian Open, and overcame challenges set by Denis Shapovalov and Matteo Berrettini to progress to a sixth Australian Open decider.

Medvedev had enjoyed a sensational tournament, defeating players of the utmost quality as he aimed for a second consecutive Grand Slam title.

The Russian took the opening set with ease and then played a brilliant tiebreak in the second to take a two-sets-to-love lead, seemingly on his way to avenging his 2021 defeat to Novak Djokovic in the final at Melbourne Park.

However the turning point came in the third set with Nadal serving at 2-3 0-40.

If Medvedev took the game it was curtains for Rafa, but somehow he managed to hold and level proceedings as he dropped just one more game for the set to force a fourth.

An invigorated Nadal became dangerous with his shot pace lifting and confidence growing, he would take yet another set and bring the tournament to a conclusion fitting for the moment.

Medvedev seemed deflated, he seemed out of it and he seemed second best as Nadal broke early in the decider.

But somehow Medvedev broke back with Nadal serving for the title to level the contest at 5-5, with nerves rising for the Spaniard who squandered breaks of serve in the fifth sets of both the 2012 and 2017 Australian Open finals.

However it was a case of third time lucky as he managed to overcome the Russian’s serve yet again and go on to claim an unprecedented 21st Grand Slam title to draw ahead of his great rivals Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the race for the most majors.

It was arguably the greatest win of Nadal’s career, seemingly gone against an opponent nearly a decade his junior, a truly remarkable contest that will be remembered for years to come.

By far the best match of 2022.


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