Alexander Zverev did it again. Like in Australia where he reached his first Grand Slam semifinal after dropping the opening set to Stan Wawrinka 6-1. the German quickly and listlessly fell behind 6-1 to Borna Coric before rallying to win in four 1-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(1), 6-3.
Coric actually led in the second set with a break serving at 4-3. Then serving 5-6, 15-30, Zverev came up with the goods avoid two sets points and a potential 0-2 set deficit.
Zverev regained his problematic serve and got a hop in his step. Coric wasn’t going away, though. But he just couldn’t covert on break chances, going 1-for-9 in the last two sets.
“I didn’t play well. It’s no secret about it,” Zverev said. “I was down 6-1, 4-2 after about 28 minutes. It’s not a secret I didn’t play my best. But I found a way, found a way to win that second set, and I feel like that’s the most important.”
Zverev moves into his second Slam semifinal which will be played on Friday. And with no Novak Djokovic around, the opportunity is huge.
“I think the Novak news shocked us all, and obviously for us younger guys, we see that as a massive opportunity, but we have to put our head down and just do our job and focus on ourselves.
“We’re going to have a new Grand Slam champion. This is the one thing that we know for sure.
“We don’t know who it is, but, yeah, there is a lot of guys that want it. There is a lot of guys that are hungry for it. I know that all the young guys are hungry for it, and it’s going to be interesting.”
In the evening, Pablo Carreno Busta held off Denis Shapovalov to return to the semifinals. The Spaniard improved to 4-0 against the Canadian on hard courts following a 3-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(4), 0-6, 6-3 victory in 4 hours, 9 minutes.
The 29-year-old got the default from Novak Djokovic but backed it up.
Tomorrow, the Russian battle between Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev takes place. Medvedev hasn’t dropped a set or even come close to losing one, dominating all comers. But Rublev has only lost one set and has had the far better, more impressive results. Medvedev, though, has won both meetings against his younger countryman, both last year.
“We are playing different tennis,” Medvedev said. “I play a little bit more counterattack with trying to make my opponent in trouble, maybe seeing what my opponent does, then deciding how I’m going to play.
“Andrey is different. He tries to dictate his game with the forehand, go for the shots. He doesn’t really care what the opponent does, he just cares about himself. So it’s a different strategy.
“But I think what is a similarity, that starting from juniors we always tried to get better, we always pushed each other. We were always happy when we win and disappointed when we lose. I’m talking also for each other.”
Really happy that we manage to play in the quarterfinal of a slam. We couldn’t play any later, so that’s the latest stage we could play at. I’m really happy about it.
At night, Dominic Thiem seeks his first US Open semifinal against 21-year-old Alex De Minaur. Thiem has won 10 of his last 11 matches in Slam play and has won both meetings against the Australian.
“Played him twice. Kind of these two matches were before he really had his breakthrough,” Thiem said looking ahead. “He improved massively in especially last one and a half, two years I would say. So I’m looking forward to that one.”
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