The world number two broke his German opponent’s serve to kick off the match but Koepfer levelled with a break in the seventh game, helped by one of two Medvedev double faults in the opening set.
It was one of a rare few moments of vulnerability for the 25-year-old, who kicked into high gear in the second set, hitting 10 winners in a clinical performance with just five unforced errors.
A clinical performance from @DaniilMedwed 😤 https://t.co/6lS3wqbYIw
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) 1630524824000
Medvedev, who went from villain to crowd favourite as the runner-up in 2019, won all but one of his first-serve points in the third set and struck five aces past Koepfer, closing out victory in one hour and 48 minutes.
“I’m really happy to be through in less than two hours,” Medvedev said. “I try to take every match as a new challenge — the more I win throughout my career… the better I will feel.”
The pair played under Arthur Ashe Stadium’s retractable roof, which was closed due to inclement weather, two years after Medvedev defeated Koepfer in the fourth round at Flushing Meadows in four sets.
Medvedev x New York 🥰@DaniilMedwed defeats Koepfer for the second time in three years at the #USOpen, this time t… https://t.co/h7HK42iDuj
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) 1630524971000
“It was a great match from my side. I’m really happy,” said Medvedev, who lost to world number one Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open final earlier this year.
“I had to stay super consistent. I knew it from the beginning of the match, because two years ago when I played him it was a tight one.”
The performance was encouraging for Cincinnati semi-finalist Medvedev, who picked up his fourth Masters 1000 title last month in Toronto. He faces Spain’s Pablo Andujar in the third round.