Watch Zverev Save Match Point With 49-Shot Rally
Montreal is proving a happy hunting ground for match point-saving warriors with fourth seed Alexander Zverev the lastest to battle back from the brink. The #NextGenATP star saved three match points – including one 49-shot rally – to hold off Richard Gasquet at the Coupe Rogers on Wednesday.
His 6-3, 4-6, 7-6(3) triumph over the Frenchman sets a blockbuster showdown with the player most tipped to rival him as a future World No.1, Nick Kyrgios. The 16th-seeded Australian earlier powered past Italian Paolo Lorenzi 6-2 ,6-3.
Gasquet arrived in Montreal having missed the first five ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events due to appendicitis surgery and lower back issues. But against Zverev, he produced the type of form that had taken him to two prior Coupe Rogers finals in Toronto (2006 l. to Federer, 2012 l. to Djokovic). Coming into Montreal, Zverev had served out a match a tour-leading 95 per cent (21 of 22) of times in 2017 (Learn More) and looked well on his way to doing so again when he raced to triple match point at 5-4 in the deciding set.
Gasquet, buoyed by strong support from the Quebecois crowd, rolled a winning backhand pass to save the third match point and a forehand winner down the line to bring up break point. He broke when the German sailed a backhand wide and drew huge roars from the Montreal crowd.
It was now the German’s turn to produce a little magic as he saved the second of three match points at 5-6 on an almighty 49-shot rally. It proved pivotal. Zverev closed it out in the tie-break on his fourth match point at the two-hour, 30-minute mark.
A day after agreeing to hit with a Twitter fan at a practice session, Kyrgios was again in a relaxed frame of mind. He had few difficulties beating Lorenzi for the first time.
The Australian thumped down 10 aces and saved his lone break point faced in little more than an hour. He will carry an unbeaten 2-0 FedEx ATP Head2Head record into his clash with Zverev.