The final round of group matches is upon us. The Red Group will be settled first and we shall discover who will face Novak Djokovic in the semifinals. Daniil Medvedev has already won the group, so it is a three-way battle for that Djokovic match-up. Who will take that place? Alexander Zverev and Hubert Hurkacz will battle for it first.
ATP Finals Day 5 Prediction
Alexander Zverev vs Hubert Hurkacz
Head-to-Head Record: Zverev 1-0 Hurkacz
Firstly, let’s address the qualification scenarios. If Zverev wins this match he is through. Hurkacz requires a win and then to hope that Jannik Sinner doesn’t defeat Daniil Medvedev later in the evening as his 1-2 record would trump Sinner’s 1-1 according to Rule B of the semifinal qualifying procedure.
So, now we know that both players need the victory, who is most likely to achieve it? Zverev has won their only meeting, however that was on the clay of Madrid, very different conditions than here in Turin. Zverev does though have the better form and statistics in these indoor conditions. The German has a 64% winning ratio indoors and is far superior to his opponent on return under a roof as well, winning 27% of his indoor return games vs the Pole’s 19%.
With his two defeats this week added to his previous record Hurkacz is now 43% win ratio indoors. He has lost more games than he has won as well. It is tough to see him breaking the Zverev serve in Turin. Medvedev caught the German cold early in their match but then Zverev held serve 15 times in a row after that, saving only 3 break points in that sequence.
The case seems pretty clear for a Zverev victory on the numbers. However, tennis is played on the court so it is never that straightfoward. I like the chances of a tiebreak, especially in the opening set. Whoever comes out on top in that would be highly likely then to win the match. Zverev can choke up in these situations and Hurkacz has shown on numerous occasions this season that when the big matches come around he tends to put in a performance.
However, there are some doubts over Hurkacz’s fitness at the moment as well. Most players seem to be struggling in some way here, but Zverev still seems physically well. I favor the German here to win the match and therefore progress to the semifinals to face Novak Djokovic.
Prediction: Zverev in 3
Main Photo from Getty.