Alexander Zverev said there were ‘no excuses’ for his shock Australian Open exit to Denis Shapovalov.
The German was expected to go all the way to the final and was many analyst’s tip to win the tournament, but he crashed to an astonishing straight sets defeat on Margaret Court Arena.
Afterwards, though, he admitted he had been unhappy with his performances all week so he was perhaps the least shocked person of all to go out the way he did.
“I was playing bad the whole week,” Zverev said. “To be honest, I didn’t think I was playing that great.
“Except against John Millman (in the second round) maybe I had a good match, but the other two matches weren’t great either.
“It’s very different also playing during the day and during the night here. I think that didn’t help me in a way, as well.
“There is no excuses. At the end of the day, I’ve got to do better. I came here with a goal to win, and maybe to become No.1 and all that.
“But if I play like that, I don’t deserve it. It’s as simple as that.
“After a match like this, it’s very silly to talk about it (aspiring to be No.1). I think I need to figure myself out first.”
Asked what had gone wrong against Shapovalov, Alexander Zverev replied: “To be honest, there is not much I can say or take away that was positive from today.
“Maybe since Wimbledon, one of the worst matches I have played. It’s just tough.
“Obviously, I give credit to Denis. It’s incredible he’s in the quarters. I think he deserves it. He’s done a lot of work. He’s improved his game.
“But I’ve got to look at myself, as well. Today was just, in my opinion, awful from my side.”
Shapovalov will now face Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals.
For more exclusive content from Tennisbuzz, including news, features, trivia, promotions and more, please be sure to sign up for our newsletter below or via our home page.
Why not test your tennis knowledge by tackling one of our fiendish quizzes too?