Alexander Zverev of Germany faces Serbian Novak Djokovic in the Masters final on 18 November 2018 in London Glyn KIRK
The German Alexander Zverev won the most prestigious title of his young career on Sunday, drawing with world number 1 Novak Djokovic, who was a big favorite, in the final of the Masters in London 6-4, 6-3.
Sparkling since early summer and untouched in London, "Djoko" failed to dominate the German prodigy that had pushed the Swiss Roger Federer the day before. Zverev, who succeeds Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov, will finish the year in 4th place at the age of 21.
He becomes the youngest player to win the Masters tournament since a certain … Djokovic (in Shanghai in 2008). He also imitates the performance of his new coach, Ivan Lendl, who also won the first of his five Masters at age 21 in 1982.
"Thank you Ivan for joining the team, I feel that this works very well at the moment and I hope it continues like this," said the very skinny Zverev after the victory. "Nobody can see without a doubt, but I'm really muscular! I was even thinner than I am now – can you believe it?" He had a good time with the London crowd who quickly put on his trophy for fear of cramps.
The German confirmed the highest level of expectations placed on him, after a season in which he disappointed in Grand Slam, his best result remaining a quarter-final at Roland Garros.
Although drastically defeated by the same Djokovic in the group stage on Wednesday, Alexander Zverev played uninhibited, helped by a service that gave him many points (10 aces, 72% first balls).
"You played better than in the group stage and deserve your victory," admitted Novak Djokovic on the court. "You're young, but you've had a remarkable career so far, and I wish you the best in the future."
In addition to the "Big 4" members (Djokovic, Nadal, Federer – who preceded him in the standings – and Murray), Zverev is the only active player to have won at least three Masters 1000 events (Madrid in 2018, Toronto and Rome in 2017) .
– "Beautiful Comeback"
In the final, the two players were first combined in a very high first set before the German had the ascendancy over the world number 1 who made some mistakes and approaches that did not know him for several months.
At 4-4, after several unforced errors, the Serbian was broken for the first time in the tournament. A feat praised for its fairness by the London public who then loudly encouraged the young German. The latter then easily completed the round at his service.
After a first interchange of breaks in the second set, the "Djoker" appeared physically worn, out of breath in front of an opponent in full success: witness this failed buffer 1-1, which allowed Zverev to take for the third consecutive time the service of the Serbian. The German still offered the luxury of a final break in the last game of the match, concluded in a splendid loss pass before collapsing on the floor, face glued to the court.
For the Serbian who was looking for a sixth Masters title, this second final lost consecutively after the Masters 1000 in Paris, will certainly have a bitter taste, since he seemed a level above his opponents during the week of London.
However, his defeat will not erase his brilliant second half of the season. Absent six months of the circuit at the end of 2017, operated by a curve in February, the "Djoker" dropped to 22nd place in May.
But he started a fantastic comeback early in the summer, including Wimbledon and the US Open, his 13th and 14th Grand Slam titles. This path allowed him to regain his throne only two years after leaving him.
"If we put things into perspective, it was an exceptional year with a wonderful comeback," Nole said after his departure, thanking his team.