The MercedesCup at Stuttgart’s Weissenhof has lost its biggest star: Alexander Zverev was defeated by fellow countryman Dustin Brown after exactly 2 hours 6-4, 6-7(3), 6-3.
Zverev’s first match on grass simply was to inaccurate as he served no less than 14 double faults. In combination with the world no. 170’s unorthodox game this was just too much. Brown got the early break in the first set and continued to serve the set out but struggled in the second. In the tie-break it was all Zverev who took the decider 7-3. In the third Brown broke Zverev to make it 5-3 and went on to serve out easily. In the quarter finals he will meet Felix Auger-Aliassime. The young Canadian beat Frenchman Gilles Simon 7-5, 6-4.
“The early break certainly helped”, said Brown afterwards. “The altitude here in Stuttgart is also good, as it makes the game faster.”
After the match, Zverev was composed: “I had little control over the game and he played well. That’s Dustin. A lot of good players have lost against him on grass, so I don’t think too much about it. I hope that I will play better in the future here in Stuttgart.”
Monfils’ big heart not enough
With Gael Monfils the MercedesCup has lost one of his fan-favorites on Thursday. But it wasn’t the heart that was missing in the world number 16’s game. While losing 5-7, 7-6(3), 6-7 (3) to Denis Kudla from the USA, the 32-year old was fighting, battling, leaving it all out there on the court. In the end it was just too many mistakes in the deciding tie-break.
Kudla will face Italian Matteo Berrettini in Friday’s quarterfinals. The Italian ousted number 2 seed Karen Khachanov with suprising ease. The Russian certainly had pictured his first match as a top-10-player differently than bowing out 4-6, 2-6 in just 68 minutes.