Growing Pains For Zverev

ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament, The Netherlands

[CR16] Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) vs. [CR137] Alexander Zverev (GER)

Zverev did well to get four games in the first set.  He showed his maturity when he held off the break points against him in his first service game and was fully engaged in the match until he served to stay in the first set and the nerves took over.  He was a seventeen year old playing against a top twenty opponent and it showed when he pushed three easy shots wide to lose his serve and the first set.

The second set was a complete disaster for Zverev, feeling the pressure of the moment and playing from behind, he got impatient and frustrated.  Zverev became flustered and never recovered his composure.  Negative emotions clouded his mind and his game fell apart, which was understandable for someone this young, even veteran players occasionally struggle with their emotions from time to time. Bautista Agut broke his will when he broke him in the fourth game and in the end it was a very easy set for Bautista Agut, who won 6-4, 6-1.

This was not the performance that Zverev wanted, to squander this opportunity in the main draw; however, he was given a very tough opponent in Bautista Agut and his only chance of winning disappeared when he lost the first set.  When you cannot depend on your weapons, it is very difficult to stay positive and inevitably the rest of your game suffers.  Yet, Zverev showed that he is improving as he showed real maturity when he patiently worked the points in the first set.  It is probably not at the rate that he wants, but he made Bautista Agut work to win that first set and can take that as a positive from this experience.


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