Alexander Zverev could derail Novak Djokovic Grand Slam attempt, says analyst

Former Grand Slam champion and TV pundit, Mats Wilander, thinks Alexander Zverev could deny Novak Djokovic the calendar year Grand Slam.

Much has been said about the world number one’s bid to become the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to win all four majors in one year. However, according to Wilander, he needs to be aware of a very dangerous opponent.

Zverev, the number four seed, has looked imperious so far, brushing aside Sam Querrey in the first round before demolishing Albert Ramos-Vinola in round two for the loss of just four games.

“I love watching Sascha play because he plays so fast in between points and then he serves so fast and so hard,’ Eurosport expert Wilander said.

“He is going to be so hard to beat here because that serve is absolutely unbelievable.

“I love the way he is being far more proactive on the court. It makes such a huge difference to know that if you hit a short ball to Sascha, he is going to take it and come forwards. That will scare some players tremendously.

There also seems to be no sign that the persistent domestic abuse allegations surrounding Zverev are affecting him, Wilander noting: “Zverev is taking short balls and he is keen to come to the net and that puts so much pressure on the opponent.

“It’s almost like something has changed in his mind and he wants to become an aggressive tennis player.

“To me, he is easily playing the best tennis I have ever seen him play.’

Wilander went on to say he feels Zverev is hungry for victory – something the German admitted in his post-match interview.

“I remember the loss in the finals to [Dominic] Thiem last year… ‘each time I step onto this court,’ he said. ‘That loss motivates me. Now I have the opportunity to hopefully do better… to play a great tournament, hopefully for a Grand Slam title.’

“Everyone needs to watch out – Sascha Zverev is most probably going to be the toughest player to beat in this tournament apart from Novak Djokovic.”

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