Why just run for the Race To Milan? Why not run for Race To London as well? That’s what Alexander Zverev is up to, at ATP 1000 Rome Masters. The 20-year-old NextGen star, who is not only leading in the race to NextGen ATP finals, but is at number 4 in the race to London as well. He defeated the 32-year-old American, John Isner in 3 sets, to make it to his first ATP 1000 Masters final. He also became the youngest Masters 1000 finalist since a 19-year-old Novak Djokovic in 2007. The Serbian won the Miami Open presented by Itau final that year.
Sasha didn’t lose any of his service games in the entire match, except for the tie-breaks. He broke Isner’s serve thrice in the game. It was Isner, who never gives up on his serving acumen. His backhands down the line showed that he didn’t just stumble into the semi-finals by accident. Has played pretty decent games, not just serves. He also became the first player to hit 100 aces at Rome since ATP World Tour began tracking aces in 1991.
The second set had to be a tie-break, because, how could the American giant not fight back and take a set, at least. He played a slam dunk, like his fellow compatriot, Pete Sampras used to, that became a famous shot from him. Zverev lost the first two serves of the tie-break, which costed him the second set. He seemed mentally prepared to wrap the match in straight sets, but his small nap in the beginning seemed to have taken a toll in the latter part of the tie-break, that he couldn’t take it, though Isner also lost his serve, twice in the tie-break.
In the decider, Isner didn’t put any effort to dominate and win. Sasha broke him in the first game, and what all it took, was quite evident on his face. Eventually, he was broken twice, and Sasha took the decisive set, 6-1, in 33 minutes. The younger Zverev brother became the first German to enter the Rome final since Tommy Haas13 in 2002, who lost to Agassi, and won the Masters 1000 title in 2001 Stuttgart-indoor. The guy is not just the NextGen, but the NowGen as well.
Another exciting match was the one which got carried forward to the next day due to heavy showers in Rome. It was Novak Djokovic vs Juan Martin del Potro, who were playing the quarter-finals match, when the Rain Gods interrupted the play, amidst the first set. The play continued the next day, with no difference in the form of either of the two players. Djokovic easily dominated, especially in the first set, where del Potro lost all of his service games, and managed to win just one game, which he earned by breaking Djokovic in the very first game of the match. In the second, one lost service game, gave Djokovic the opportunity he needed, to seek the revenge for the first round exit at The Rio Olympics may be. Djokovic now leads the head-to-head, 14-4.