Olympic champion Alexander Zverev surprised at the start of the ATP finals in Turin.
Alexander Zverev opened his arms and waved to the Turin audience: The Olympic champion disenchanted Carlos Alcaraz at the start of the ATP finals.
The 26-year-old from Hamburg defeated the second-placed Wimbledon winner from Spain 6:7 (3:7), 6:3, 6:4 and decisively opened the door to the semi-finals.
“I’m happy to be back here. I missed you a lot last year”said Zverev after his surprise success. Zverev had to sit out injured in 2022. “I knew I had to serve well today. I managed to do that. I’m happy to have my first win under my belt”said Zverev, who hit 16 aces
Strong serves as a base
The winner of the 2018 and 2021 tournament, who beat Alcaraz with a brutal serve and a better balance between risk and safety, will face Russians Daniil Medvedev and Andrej Rublew in the group stage. The top two teams advance to the semi-finals.
Zverev started the prestigious annual results as an outsider. Participation in itself can be seen as a success in the comeback year after the serious foot injury.
“Just enjoy this”
“I like being among the eight best players in the world and being able to compete with them”he said before the start at the Pala Alpitour, knowing that the tournament suits him – hard court, indoor without external wind influences, two sets.
He also proved this against Alcaraz, who had clearly shown the limits of the best German player twice this season. Both in the round of 16 of the Madrid Masters and in the quarter-finals of the US Open The current world number seven, from Germany, has not won a single set.
Alcaraz with unusual weaknesses
In Turin, however, Zverev created his chances from the start with a strong serve and an error rate initially lower than Alcaraz’s – but then missed four break points when the score was 3:3. Then the Spaniard, who had been a little weak in recent months, suddenly appeared and showed his class.
At the beginning of the second round, Alcaraz lost control again, made simple mistakes and Zverev quickly made it 3-0. With three aces in one game he finally sealed the set victory.
Autumn creates a moment of shock
In the third set, Zverev caused a shocking moment: he fell and briefly awakened spectators’ memories of his injury in Paris. “It was a pain in the ass for a while. But you can’t compare it to Paris,” said Zverev.
Ultimately, the fall should have no consequences: “I didn’t twist my ankle, I just slipped a little. I have a little pain in my Achilles tendon. But I don’t think it’s anything serious.”Zverev continued.
Zverev now has a day off on Tuesday before things get serious again on Wednesday. Instead, the parallel group with Novak Djokovic is now called up again; the Serb will face South Tyrolean Jannik Sinner on Tuesday night (9pm), and Stefanos Tsitsipas and Boris Becker’s protégé Holger Rune will compete in the afternoon (2:30pm). .