Melbourne (AFP) – After winning the first ATP Cup of his career, Alexander Zverev was delighted.
“Winning something for your country is one of the greatest things in sport,” said the US Open finalist after beating three sets over Denis Shapovalov, with whom he brought success against Canada perfectly prematurely. Jan Lennard Struve had previously beat Milos Raonic in two hard-core slots. The final defeat of Struff and Kevin Kreowitz in the doubles was not an outcome.
Last year, Zverev lost all three of his singles at a team event premiere and sometimes even gave horror performances. On Wednesday, the 23-year-old couldn’t manage everything against the number 12 in the world. When it came up, Zverev was in the third-set tiebreaker. “I played two really good balls in the tiebreak and fortunately I won for our team.”
On Thursday German night (00:00 CET / SKY and Servos TV), Zverev & Co. now face defending champion Serbia in the semi-finals. The Serbs also defeated Canada at the start. After the first person between Struve and Dozan Lajovic, there is a strong duel between Zverev and world number one Novak Djokovic. “There are always special duels against Novak,” Zverev said. “You have to show your best tennis.” “Last year we were eliminated from the group stage, this time we really want to go to the semi-finals.”
Italy and Russia are already there, and each celebrated their second victories on Wednesday. After that the semi-finals will be played on Friday, the final on Saturday. The Australian Open begins on Monday at a facility in Melbourne Park, with only Zverev knocked out in the semi-finals against Austrian Dominic Thiem last year.
© dpa-infocom, dpa: 210203-99-279677/5
“Internet nerd. Avid student. Zombie guru. Tv enthusiast. Coffee advocate. Social media expert. Music geek. Professional food maven. Thinker. Troublemaker.”