Alexander Zverev battles to First Grand Slam Quarterfinal

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Alexander Zverev has reached his maiden Grand Slam quarterfinal. The German had to battle through another five-set match in Roland Garros to earn his spot.

The 21-year-old World #3 has not taken the easy way through to the quarterfinals. The first round saw the second seed ease through against Ričardas Berankis in straight sets.

Since then, however, the German has been made to work for the victories. The second round was the start of the difficult road. Zverev was two sets to one down and turned the match round to defeat Dusan Lajovic.

In the third round, the German had to come back from a two-set-to-one deficit against Damir Dzumhur; Zverev also had to save a match point. Having played two five set matches back-to-back, the German would have hoped to have an easier ride on Sunday.

The fourth round match against Karen Khachanov started badly for the second seed. The Russian broke early and took the first set. The German pulled back level taking the second on a tiebreak.

Zverev then immediately dropped the third set, the Russian dominating to get a two set to one lead. From this point the German once again managed to turn everything round, taking the next two sets to close the match out and reach his maiden Grand Slam quarterfinal.

 

Youngest ATP quarter-finalist

The 21-year-old is the youngest quarterfinalist at the French Open since 2009, when Juan Martin Del Potro reached the same stage at the age of 20. His quarterfinal opponent will be another tough test as the German will play Dominic Thiem.

The Austrian leads the head to head, although Zverev won their last meeting. Thiem has not had much of an easier route, losing one set in each of the last three rounds at Roland Garros.

The second seed will be hoping for an easier match against Thiem, but both will be looking for the semifinal berth. It would be the first for Zverev at any Slam. Thiem will be trying to make his third French Open semifinal in a row.

Main Photo from Getty