Alexander Zverev won the biggest title of his career so far by winning the Italian Open, defeating four-time champion Novak Djokovic in the final in straight sets. The win helped Zverev to a career-best ranking of World No.10, thus reaching the Top 10 of the ATP rankings for the first time in his career.Zverev has been touted by many to be a future Grand Slam Champion and a future World No.1. Zverev produced several promising performances last year and has been in good form this year and has produced several upsets over top ranked players. Here are five of Alexander Zverev’s biggest career victories.
#5. 2017 Italian Open semi-final against Milos Raonic
Zverev had a shaky start to his Italian Open campaign as he survived a scare from Kevin Anderson in the first round. However, he followed this with a convincing victory over Viktor Troicki in straight sets following which, he beat Fabio Fognini (who had beaten Andy Murray in the second round) in straight sets to reach his third Masters 1000 quarter-final of the year.In the quarter-finals, Zverev was up against Milos Raonic who was yet to lose a set in the tournament. The match began well with both players giving in their all in the first set. The first set eventually went to a tie-break which Zverev won 7-4.After a close first set, the crowd at Rome expected an equally nail-biting second set. However, the second set turned out to be completely one-sided as Zverev completely outplayed last year’s Wimbledon runner-up to win the set 6-1, thus reaching his first ever Masters 1000 semi-final.
#4. 2016 Gerry Weber Open semi-final against Roger Federer
Zverev was in fine form during the Gerry Weber Open as he reached the semi-finals of the tournament without dropping a single set. In the semi-finals, Zverev was up against top seed Roger Federer who had also not dropped a set so far. This was Zverev’s first meeting against Federer with their first meeting coming at the Rome Masters where Federer beat him in straight sets.The first set was a very exciting affair which went to a tie-break. Zverev took the lead in the game by winning the tie-break 7-4, and in turn, the set. However, Federer came back well in the second set, edging out Zverev 7-5 to level the match.After two exciting sets, the third set was relatively one-sided and it was Zverev who was dominating the match and eventually won the set 6-3 to produce THE upset of the tournament and reach his second ATP final of the year. However, Zverev went on to lose the final against compatriot Florian Mayer.
#3. 2016 St.Petersburg Open final against Stan Wawrinka
After bowing out of the US Open in the second round, Zverev competed at the St.Petersburg Open where he was in really good form as he reached his third ATP final of the year after defeating Tomas Berdych in the semi-finals in straight sets. In the final, Zverev was up against top seed Stan Wawrinka who had just won the US Open.Both players were yet to lose a set in the tournament but it was Wawrinka whose streak was broken as Zverev took the first set 6-2. However, Wawrinka was not one to back down and he rebounded well by taking the second set 6-3.The third set was an exciting one with neither player willing to back down. However, Zverev eventually edged out the US Open champ 7-5, to win his first ever ATP title. This also brought an end to an 11-match winning streak for Wawrinka in Tour Finals.
#2. 2017 Hopman Cup against Roger Federer
Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev played the best match of this year’s Hopman Cup at Perth, and although the tournament might not count towards the Tour, this was still a big one! While Switzerland had won their opening match 3-0 against Great Britain, Germany were beaten by France 2-1.The match between Federer and Zverev began in exciting fashion with both players fighting hard in the first set which eventually went to a tie-break. Zverev drew first blood by whizzing past Federer in the tie-break 7-1. The second set was also very exciting and also went to a tie-break but this time, it was Federer who won the tie-break 7-4 to level the match.
The crowd at Perth expected an exciting final set and they weren’t disappointed as both players stood their ground and took the final set to a tie-break as well. Zverev eventually triumphed after edging out Federer 7-4. However, Germany would go on to lose the battle as Belinda Bencic defeated Andrea Petkovic and the Swiss duo got the better of their opposite numbers in the mixed doubles match.
#1. 2017 Italian Open final vs Novak Djokovic
Zverev defeated Raonic in the quarter-finals to reach his first ever Masters 1000 semi-final where he was up against John Isner who beat Marin Cilic in the quarter-finals. Zverev began well by taking the first set 6-4 but Isner rebounded well by taking the second set 7-6.However, Zverev totally outplayed the 6 ft 10 in tall American in the final set to reach his first ever Masters 1000 final where he was up against Novak Djokovic who was in his fourth successive final at Rome. This was the first time Zverev would meet the Serb.Both players began the first set well but Zverev’s serve proved to be the difference as he took the first set 6-4. The first set boosted Zverev’s morale and boy, did he use it to his advantage. Zverev totally outplayed Djokovic in the second set by the score of 6-3 to win his first Masters 1000 title. The win elevated Zverev’s ranking from World No.17 to World No.10.