RUSSIAN tennis player Daniil Medvedev is in a stable condition following a serious choking incident, doctors have confirmed.
The world number 4 and 2019 US Open finalist was facing a familiar foe in Rafael Nadal at this year's ATP (Association of Tennis Players) World Tour Finals at the O2 in London, and was playing the outstanding level of tennis that has seen him lift two Masters 1000 titles this year.
He was comfortably winning the third set against the formidable Spaniard 5-1 and had a match point at 30-40, when suddenly he experienced a life-threatening choking fit the likes of which tennis fans have not seen since Roger Federer during this year's Wimbledon final.
Though clearly barely able to hit the ball due to the crippling asphyxiation, the brave champion played on, constantly giving his team a "thumbs up" to indicate he was still breathing, but he was fooling nobody.
The merciless Nadal seemed to thrive on his opponent's affliction, hitting the ball harder and punishing his ailing foe until the Russian could neither play nor breathe, affording the "King of Clay" a tiebreak victory and a weary Medvedev a much needed trip to the hospital.
Doctors immediately performed a Heimlich manoeuvre upon Medvedev's arrival, hooked him up to an oxygen tank and gave him a bed, where he remains in a critical, but stable, condition.
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