Former World No 1 Christine Evert wants Alexander Zverev to play to his strengths in the remaining matches of the Roland Garros to have any chance of clinching his maiden Grand Slam. Zverev recently defeated Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the quarterfinals and has progressed to the semifinals where he will be up against the fiery Stefanos Tsitsipas.
The German is tall and has that driving raw power to hit those gigantic first serves. His upper body strength allows him to put more force behind his groundstrokes.
Evert who is a seven time Roland Garros winner wants the German to make good use of his physicality and play attacking tennis right from the start. Evert also claimed that Zverev is not a grinder like Rafael Nadal and hence he must use his physical prowess to win his maiden Grand Slam.
“He’s (Alexander Zverev) gotta use his height and his wingspan and shorten the points,” Chris Evert said. “He’s not a grinder, he’s not a Nadal. That’s the way he’s gonna win – big serve, big forehand and really use his weapons to the maximum and end the points as soon as he can. That’s his game and that’s his only chance to win the French Open.”
Evert lauded Zverev’s mental toughness at the ongoing Roland Garros. She pointed out how the German has held his emotions really well and is on the right path to success.
“He is not getting too excited,” said Evert. “He is managing his emotions very, very well. He knows he still has a tough route to win this tournament and I like his attitude. I like the way he played. I think he’s on a good course.”
The 18 time Grand Slam winner also claimed that both Alexander Zverev and Stefanos Tsitsipas have tasted success mainly due to their ability to play the ball on the rise giving no time to their opponents.
“They (Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev) are rushing their opponents, they are taking the ball early,” Chris Evert said. “In doing that, you’ve gotta have quick reflexes, you gotta have great anticipation and also obviously a great balance to take the ball early, to take it over your shoulder. Also accelerating more with spin, there’s no more flat balls in this game of tennis.”
It will be a very intense clash between two young players who are all set to become the new ambassadors of tennis after the ‘Fab Four’. It will be interesting to see whether Zverev manages to keep his calm as Tsitsipas will look to impose himself just like he did in the quarterfinals against Daniil Medvedev.