PARIS (Reuters): Brazilian Thiago Seyboth Wild said it was the happiest day of his life after beating world number two Daniil Medvedev at the French Open on Tuesday.
The 23-year-old, making his debut at Roland Garros, won a gruelling contest 7-6(5) 6-7(6) 2-6 6-3 6-4, sending the Russian second seed home in the first round of the Grand Slam.
“It’s definitely the happiest day of my life. But the tournament is not over, and I have worked very hard to be here, and I would like to stay as long as possible,” he told a press conference.
“From the first day I knew it was going to be a tough match, but I knew how to play. I’ve seen him (Medvedev) play thousands of times. I just had to believe in myself and believe in the work I’ve been doing.”
Wild, who had not played a tour-level tournament nor a Grand Slam main draw since 2020, concentrated on the clay-court circuits earlier this year, claiming championships in Chile and Argentina.
“The French Open is a very special tournament for me. I think with so many times I’ve played here I could get the experience I need to qualify this year and get past the first round, but I think it’s momentum. You have to make that momentum last as long as possible,” he added.
The Brazilian, who qualified in Paris by beating Germany’s Dominik Koepfer in the final round, said his inspiration came from record 14-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal.
“He’s a guy I’ve admired all my life. The way he plays, the spirit he puts on the court and the way he wants to win, you don’t see that every day, you don’t see that in anybody. He’s Rafael Nadal,” Wild said.