Tennis

World ATP Finals: Zverev shocks Federer

Nothing for granted: Novak Djokovic looked sharp and focused from the first point, despite knowing he had already qualified as the winner of the Guga Kuerten Group.

Nothing for granted: Novak Djokovic looked sharp and focused from the first point, despite knowing he had already qualified as the winner of the Guga Kuerten Group.  

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Djokovic gears up for last-four with win over Cilic

Alexander Zverev beat Roger Federer 7-5, 7-6(5) on Saturday to reach the title decider at the ATP Finals in a match that ended in confusion and high drama.

The 21-year-old German, leading the charge of the new generation against the old guard, is now just one win away from the biggest title of his career, but the Swiss must wait for a tilt at his 100th tournament victory.

The end of the match was overshadowed by an unusual incident — Zverev stopping a rally with Federer leading 4-3 in the second-set tie-break after a ballboy dropped a ball, forcing the point to be replayed.

Zverev won the point with an ace and nudged into a 5-4 lead before Federer inexplicably netted with a simple forehand volley to hand the German two set points, the second of which he took on his own serve.

Immediately after the match finished there were boos from the pro-Federer crowd at London's O2 Arena and on-court interviewer Annabel Croft told them to be “more respectful” as Zverev had been playing by the rules.

“First of all I want to apologise for the situation in the tie-break,” said the German. “The ball boy dropped the ball and it is the rules we have to stop the point.”

“I'm unbelievably proud,” added the World No. 5. “My team and me have been working so hard for this.”

Earlier, Novak Djokovic prepared for his last-four clash with Kevin Anderson in ominous fashion, outlasting Marin Cilic 7-6(7), 6-2.

The Serbian World No. 1 started Friday’s evening match at London’s O2 Arena with the luxury of knowing he had already qualified as the winner of the Guga Kuerten Group, but looked sharp and focused from the first point.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 6:03:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/tennis/world-atp-finals-zverev-shocks-federer/article25527869.ece

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