Alexander Zverev threw himself into the French Open favorites mix Sunday, defeating Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-4 in the championship match of the Madrid Open.
The 21-year-old lifted the Madrid title for the first time.
“All in all, I’m just really happy with how I played, that I could win my third Masters,” said Zverev. “So far it’s been pretty good for me on clay this year. Hopefully I can continue this kind of streak in Rome. Obviously the altitude fits me a little bit with my serve, with how I play, with me playing a little bit more aggressive than maybe others. That definitely fits me. But I just feel confident and comfortable right now.
“In general, the last 10 days have been pretty good, winning two titles in this time. One in Germany and this one here is massive. It’s been unbelievable. I’m not going to lie. I’m just going to do everything I can to continue this kind of streak, get the performance I had here in Rome.”
Zverev was coming off the title at Munich and has now won 18 consecutive sets.
Zverev broke in the first game of the match, winning the battle to crowd the baseline and take control of the court. The normally steady game of Thiem faltered under the weight of 21 unforced errors.
Coming into the match Thiem had won four of their five career encounters. It was Thiem’s second consecutive runner-up effort in Madrif after losing to Nadal in last year’s final.
“It was I think an average match from both of us,” Thiem said. “I just couldn’t maintain my level from the match against Rafa and the match yesterday against Anderson. That was the problem today. He had one break in the beginning of every set. It is a very bad start. In general, I was playing not good enough. He was not serving better than Anderson yesterday. I had many returns on the racquet, but just didn’t make them, or played it too easy back for him. He was immediately in the offense.
“I didn’t have great results in the last weeks in Monte Carlo and Barcelona, but here I got my self confidence full back, even though I lost today. It was still a good week. I just played bad today, that’s it. There is no reason to be worried…I will learn from it. In general, it was a very good week. I hope I will get more chances to win a first Masters.”
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