Alexander Zverev Wins Epic In Paris, Downs Grigor Dimitrov To Reach QFs | ATP Tour


Alexander Zverev was made to work hard for his seventh consecutive win on Thursday at the Rolex Paris Masters. The fourth seed recovered from squandering two match points in the second set, downing Grigor Dimitrov 7-6(4), 6-7(3), 6-3 to continue his pursuit of a third ATP Masters 1000 title of the season.

In a tight match against Dimitrov, Zverev saved eight of the nine break points he faced, but had to be patient on return against the 30-year-old, who gave the German very few chances.

After squandering two match points on Dimitrov’s serve at 6-5, 15/40, the fourth seed eventually advanced after two hours and 46 minutes to improve to 3-1 in his ATPHead2Head series against the Bulgarian.

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“[It was an] incredible match,” Zverev said. “Grigor is playing very high-level tennis and I had to leave everything out there. I think it was a very high-level match and it could have gone both ways, especially the third set. I am happy with how things went in the end.”

The German, who clinched his fifth tour-level crown of the year in Vienna last week, is currently playing some of the best tennis of his career, triumphing in 27 of his past 29 matches.

Zverev reached the final in Paris a year ago and will be aiming to go one step further this week, with Casper Ruud or Marcos Giron awaiting next in the quarter-finals. Earlier this season, the World No. 4 lifted Masters 1000 trophies in Madrid and Cincinnati and also clinched the Tokyo Olympics singles gold medal.

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In a lively first set, Zverev quickly found his rhythm from the baseline as he fired his powerful groundstrokes through the court, stepping inside the baseline to move Dimitrov around. After failing to serve the set out at 5-4, Zverev recovered to claim the tie-break..

Zverev continued to hold firm in the second set, as both players looked to gain the first strike in the rallies. The fourth seed zoned in on return in the 12th game, but failed to convert two match points at 6-5, 15/40. Fuelled by belief and support from the French crowd, Dimitrov then quickly raced ahead in the tie-break to level. But he could not keep Zverev at bay in the decider, with the German securing victory on his third match point, one hour after his second.

Dimitrov has been in strong form recently, having reached his first Masters 1000 semi-final of the season in Indian Wells last month, before he battled past Richard Gasquet and Karen Khachanov in three sets this week in Paris.



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