Monday 23 August 2021
“Don’t cry like that”
Emotional Zverev crowns an incredible week
First the historic Olympic victory in Tokyo and now the first German success in Cincinnati since Boris Becker in 1985. For tennis professional Alexander Zverev there are currently no limits. The 24-year-old is now one of the big favorites in the US Open.
With the pottery trophy in his arms, Alexander Zverev looked at his overjoyed father during the victory speech – and couldn’t help but joke. “Don’t cry like that, Lord God,” he called to his dad and coach when he couldn’t hold back tears of joy over the Masters title in Cincinnati. Unlike the Olympic victory three weeks ago in Tokyo, there was a customary honor in front of spectators, and Zverev had every reason to relax. In just 59 minutes, the 24-year-old from Hamburg dealt with his Russian friend Andrei Rublev in the final 6: 2, 6: 3.
Out of respect for the 23-year-old, whom he has known since childhood, Zverev refrained from cheering too much on Sunday. “I know how Andrei is feeling”, he said after his fifth title at a Masters, while the disappointed Rublev has to wait for a triumph in a tournament in the second most important category.
“An unbelievable feeling”
As only the second German after Boris Becker in 1985, Zverev secured the title in the preparatory tournament for the US Open, which starts in a week. The fact that the new fourth in the world rankings has not yet won a match in the main field is another indication of the great shape the German number one is still in. “I won my first match here four days ago, now I have the title. It was an unbelievable week,” said Zverev, who had nothing to do with the stomach problems and the exhausting chase against Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas in the semifinals.
Rublev seemed to have put up with his hard-fought semi-final success over compatriot Daniil Medvedev worse. A quick 4-0 lead in the first set and an early break in the second were the basis for their 17th tournament victory. Zverev could easily get over the fact that he gave up the serve against the Olympic champion in mixed shortly before the end.
Coming to the US Open with this success, Zverev called an “unbelievable feeling”. One year after the wafer-thin final against the currently injured Austrian Dominic Thiem and the missed first Grand Slam title, Zverev also slowed himself down in his joy. He would rather allow himself one more – perhaps not absolutely desirable – public congratulations for his brother Mischa, who turned 34 on Sunday. “My brother will kill me for it,” said Zverev with a smile, before adding the almost forgotten congratulations in his speech