The last Grand Slam tournament of the year is over for Alexander Zverev: Hamburg had no chance against Jannik Sinner from South Tyrol. After the game, the best German spoke about the reasons for his end.
Alexander Zverev’s limbs hurt, his head buzzed. “I am completely sick, can barely breathe and had a temperature of 38 degrees,” said the best German tennis player in a hoarse voice shortly after his dream of the first Grand Slam title in Paris erupted again. Zverev continued to cough behind his mask during the virtual press conference.
Zverev: “I don’t have the correct symptoms of Corona”
Of course he is now being tested again for Corona, the number seven in the world announced, so far the regular tests have been negative. The latter was apparently performed on Sept. 29, another was yet to be done on Sunday, a New York Times reporter reported, referring to organizing French tennis association FFT. “I think it’s more like the weather here. I don’t have the right symptoms of Corona,” said Zverev, “I really hope it’s not.”
Shortly before, without his usual strength, he barely had a chance against 19-year-old Italian shooting star Jannik Sinner and missed his third place finish in the quarter-finals of the French Open with a 3: 6, 3: 6, 6: 4, 3 : 6 defeat. “Maybe I shouldn’t have played,” said Zverev. “But somehow I was hoping for a three-set win.”
Duel against Nadal is canceled
His strong season with the finals at the US Open and the semi-finals at the Australian Open ended in disappointment. Overall, he’s definitely on the right track, Zverev said. But he had hoped for more for Paris, he wanted to get as close as possible to coronation at one of the four major tennis events and challenge record champion Nadal in the round of the last eight. The sinner will do that now.
The South Tyrolean is the first French Open debutant since Nadal 2005 to reach the round of the last eight. Daniel Altmaier (Kempen) can do the same on Monday, Laura Siegemund is also still in the race for the German Tennis Association (DTB). The two defending champions Kevin Krawietz / Andreas Mies have already reached the quarter finals.
Zverev’s lack of freshness at the beginning of the competition was noticed, he quickly contacted the doctors and was given a nasal spray. It was difficult for him to keep up with Sinner, who he has considered one of the best players in the world “from the start”. “With every long demonstration I felt a burning sensation in my chest,” said Zverev, who, according to his own story, could have been infected with his physio Hugo Gravil, who was also ill.
Sinner, who knows Zverev well from several joint training sessions, marched into the round of 16 without losing a set and dominated the game with his powerful baseline hits. “Zverev has to play his best match today,” Becker said at Eurosport: “It’s not for weak bodies and soft nerves.” Zverev got his chances despite a weak body, but could not use them. Frustrated, he hit his bat to the ground.
Sinner, still 75th in the world ranking with a clearly upward trend, impressed with his strength, but did not keep playing flawlessly. Zverev had to fight hard for almost every point, he often missed the killer instinct in the rallies. And he was visibly pumping. Zverev did not give up, fought stubbornly and used Sinner’s weak phase at the end of the third set. But then Sinner switched again and rightly prevailed.
Altmaier wants to follow on Monday, who confidently enters a duel with Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta (No. 17) after winning three sets against number seven seeded Italian Matteo Berrettini. “That was just the beginning,” said Altmaier. Siegemund also expects good chances after the coup against Petra Martic (Croatia / No. 13) against Paula Badosa Gilbert (Spain).