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Roland Garros: Alexander Zverev vs Pierre-Hugues Herbert preview, head-to-head & prediction | French Open 2020

Alexander Zverev at the 2020 French Open.
Alexander Zverev at the 2020 French Open.
Namit Kumar
ANALYST
Modified 30 Sep 2020, 15:21 IST
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Match details

Fixture: Alexander Zverev vs Pierre-Hugues Herbert

Date: 30 September 2020

TournamentRoland Garros 2020

Round: Second round (Round of 64)

Venue: Paris, France

Category: Grand Slam

Surface: Red clay

Prize money: Approx. €38,000,000

Match timing: Approx. 5 pm CEST, 8.30 pm IST

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Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / NBC Sport | India - Star Sports / Disney+ Hotstar VIP

Also check out: The Complete French Open 2020 Results


Alexander Zverev vs Pierre-Hugues Herbert preview

US Open runner-up and World No. 7 Alexander Zverev faces France's Pierre-Hugues Herbert in the second round of the French Open on Wednesday.

After reaching the semifinals at the Australian Open earlier this year, Zverev suffered a second-round defeat at the hands of Andy Murray at the Cincinnati Masters, which prompted doubts about his US Open chances. But a month later the German found himself two sets up in the final, after having beaten the likes of Borna Coric and Pablo Carreno Busta earlier.

Zverev lost the match from that commanding position, which again led to apprehensions over whether he would be able to summon the mental courage to take on another Grand Slam in two weeks' time. But the German quickly cast those doubts aside as he beat Dennis Novak 7-5 6-2 6-4 in the first round with relative ease.

His next opponent, home favorite Pierre-Hugues Herbert, has blown hot and cold all season.

Pierre- Hugues Herbert at the 2020 French Open
Pierre- Hugues Herbert at the 2020 French Open
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The Frenchman chose to skip the American hardcourt season, and all his appearances since the lockdown have been on the red dirt. That includes a semifinal finish at the Prague Challenger last month and a first-round loss in Kitzbuhel.

But Herbert comes into the match against Zverev on the back of a dominant straight-sets win over Michael Mmoh, which suggests he may be rediscovering his touch.

Alexander Zverev vs Pierre-Hugues Herbert head-to-head

The meeting in Paris is the second between the two players and Alexander Zverev leads the head-to-head 1-0 over Pierre-Hugues Herbert. The German registered three-hour, four-set win against the Frenchman in the first round at Roland Garros in 2016.

Herbert did win all three Challenger level meetings between the pair, although none of them were on clay.

Alexander Zverev vs Pierre-Hugues Herbert prediction

Alexander Zverev at the 2020 French Open.
Alexander Zverev at the 2020 French Open.

With his win against Novak, Alexander Zverev showed that he has gone past his US Open heartbreak from two weeks ago. And on the basis of form and ranking, Zverev comes into the match on Wednesday as the overwhelming favorite.

Many players are having to adapt their game to the new conditions at Roland Garros this year but Zverev, who is an accomplished claycourter, seems to be flourishing. After the first round, he claimed he was very happy with the new balls as they assisted his ability to hammer his powerful groundstrokes.

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To cause an upset, Herbert will have to look to return the ball deep and take advantage of Zverev's underwhelming second serve. The Frenchman will also have to find his best first serves, which are arguably his strongest weapon.

But if Zverev serves well, hits through his forehand and maintains a steady level, his firepower should be too much to handle for the home favorite.

Prediction: Alexander Zverev to win in straight sets.


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Published 29 Sep 2020, 17:39 IST
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