Alexander Zverev missed the final of the French Open. The 26-year-old is clearly defeated by the Norwegian Casper Ruud and makes too many mistakes in the match. After the match, he explains that he is struggling with a hamstring injury.
Bitter evening for Alexander Zverev.
The German number one failed at the French Open in the semi-finals with 0: 3 (3: 6, 4: 6, 0: 6) against the Norwegian Casper Ruud.
In his third semi-final in Paris in a row, Zverev played too prone to errors from the start, making a total of 37 mistakes without need. His opponent from Norway, on the other hand, hardly made a mistake and took advantage of his break chances. In the third set, a frustrated Zverev hardly put up any resistance and received the absolute maximum penalty with the 0: 6.
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The defeat saw Zverev miss his second Grand Slam final after his final appearance at the US Open 2020. The victorious Ruud reached his second consecutive French Open final. “I tried to play without thinking too much. It’s the end of the tournament. Everyone who is here is playing well. I wanted to play without too much pressure and I did that well. I’m incredibly happy that I won the match,” said Casper Ruud after entering the final.
In the final on Sunday, the Norwegian meets Novak Djokovic, who prevailed in a dramatic semi-final against Carlos Alcaraz, who was plagued by cramps. Ruud has great respect for his opponent in the final: “It will be tough. Last year against Rafa, this year against Novak: what can I say?
“The thigh played a role”
After the clear elimination, Olympic champion Zverev revealed that he was struggling with physical problems.
“I don’t want to belittle his performance at all, but I had my problems,” said Zverev after the defeat and added: “The thigh played a role.”
The Hamburger had never found his game in just 2:09 hours and deservedly lost. The 26-year-old has to wait for his second major final and his first title in one of the four Grand Slam tournaments.
“I couldn’t move very well and you just have to do that against him. Of course, my game then also becomes more hectic. Then of course it will be easier against me,” said Zverev, referring to his thigh problems. He has “a small strain”.
In the end, Zverev realized that he had taken an important step forward a year after his momentous injury drama: “The most positive thing is that I can say that I’m back at the level where I was. Overall, I’m playing at a very high level again, which is nice for me. I’ll take that with me from the two weeks.”
The speed with which he fought his way back to the top level of the world cannot be taken for granted: “It usually takes longer. I was in a Grand Slam semifinal. That is very positive.”
French Open: Zverev starts the match weak
Alexander Zverev didn’t move well early in the game and conceded a break in his first service game.
But then Zverev found his level, conquered four breakballs in the following game, which the Norwegian was initially able to fend off. Zverev then used the fifth breakball and reduced it to 1: 2.
In the following service game, however, Zverev suffered another setback. After initially being able to fend off three breakballs in a row, his Norwegian opponent used chance number 4 to make it 3:1.
After that, Ruud served confidently for a long time, but when it looked like he could close the set at 5: 3 on his own serve, Zverev still worked out a break ball, which he missed with a slight mistake. A little later Ruud closed the first set 6:3.
Zverev doesn’t take his chances
The German number one was initially not unsettled by the loss of the set. He got through his first service game in set two in less than a minute.
But Ruud also held up well and so a real fight developed at eye level, in which Zverev neglected three break chances in the fourth game of the set.
In the third sentence, almost nothing worked for Zverev. Right at the beginning of the set, he gave up his serve twice and received the maximum penalty of 0:6 in the third set.
With Sports Information Service (SID)
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