Zverev converted his second match point in a high-class game after 3:18 hours. The German is in Paris for the second time in a row and for the fifth time in his career in a major semi-final. In the fight for his second final in one of the four big events after the US Open 2020 (loss to Dominic Thiem), Zverev meets the winner of the “giant duel” between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. As a night session, this is not scheduled before 8:45 p.m.
“I knew that I had to play my best tennis from the start and I did it,” said Zverev in the winner’s interview on the court. “He (Alcaraz, note) will win this tournament several times. I hope I can make it before he starts beating us all.”
For Zverev it was the first win against a top ten player in one of the four Grand Slam tournaments. And that too against the player of the hour. Because Alcaraz had not lost 14 games in a row before and won the tournaments in Barcelona and Madrid before the French Open. Especially in the Spanish capital, the young star had come up trumps and had beaten Nadal, Djokovic and Zverev in the final. There the German didn’t stand a chance at 3: 6 1: 6.
Zverev shows nerves of steel
In the Stade Roland Garros it looked very different on Tuesday. Because Zverev acted much more aggressively than in the previous games and did not let Alcaraz play his usual dominant game. He also showed nerves of steel right from the start when he fended off a break ball from the Spaniard in his first service game. Instead, he took over the service from Alcaraz himself a little later and from then on determined what happened, to the amazement of the spectators.
In the fourth set, Alcaraz, who was now increasing, tried to pull the momentum onto his side several times. But Zverev held on and made the break to 5: 4. But that wasn’t enough to win at first because Alcaraz managed the rebreak. The decision had to be made in the tie-break, where Zverev fended off a set ball to make the victory perfect a little later. “I’m extremely happy that I won the tie-break,” admitted Zverev.
Trevisan and Gauff for the first time in the semifinals
For the women, the Italian Martina Trevisan is in the semi-finals of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in her career. The unseeded 28-year-old defeated Canadian Leylah Fernandez 6: 2 6: 7 (3/7) 6: 3 and in the semi-finals meets Cori Gauff, who is ten years her junior and who is also making her semi-final debut at a major. The 18th-placed American defeated her compatriot Sloane Stephens 7-5 6-2.
Gauff and Trevisan in the semifinals
At the French Open in Paris, the only 18-year-old Coco Gauff continued to cause a sensation. After a two-set win over compatriot Sloane Stephens, the American is in a Grand Slam semi-final for the first time in her career.
Trevisan missed a match ball against number 17 seeded Fernandez, who was struggling with foot problems, in the second set when the score was 5: 4 and gave the round to the 2021 US Open finalist in the tie-break. However, the number 59 in the world was not deterred by this and stormed to a 4-0 lead in the decisive set and finally converted her second match point after 2:21 hours.
“I was nervous at the first match point, I was thinking too much. About the fact that I’m only one point away from the semi-finals. After that I came to terms with the situation and just kept going,” said Trevisan after her victory. The Italian had already reached the quarter-finals in Paris two years ago, but then lost to eventual winner Iga Swiatek. This duel can now come at the earliest in the final.
Gauff wins a high-class game
Gauff and Stephens showed some high-class and long rallies after the Trevisan success, but mostly the teenager had the better end for himself against 29-year-old Stephens, who was in the Paris final in 2018. After exactly 90 minutes, Gauff used her second match ball to get into the last four.
“I am so happy and can hardly find words. Up until last year, I might have tried too hard to live up to the expectations of others,” said Gauff, adding: “It’s much more about enjoying life.” The 18-year-old was in Roland Garros last year Quarterfinals, now she’s one step further and can look forward to the temporary highlight of her career.