Alexander Zverev arrived in Madrid with a lot of confidence after defending the title in Munich in front of the home crowd, seeking more success in the Spanish capital on one of the fastest clay tournaments in the world.
Sascha was among the favorites, maybe in the second line behind Rafael Nadal, and he delivered a masterclass performance in all five matches to take his third Masters 1000 title and earn some big records that would take some beating.
This was one of the most dominant performances in service games in the entire Masters 1000 series, especially when we considered the surface, and the young German has joined Roger Federer on a very special record list. Delivering the full package of outstanding serving, powerful groundstrokes, the right set of mind and the ability to overpower all five rivals with a tremendous pace of what has been the perfect balance of attacking tennis and great defense, Zverev wrapped up all the encounters in under 80 minutes and he faced one break point during the entire tournament, which was never seen before at this level! He fired an ace in the 10th game of the opening set against Leonardo Mayer in the second round and that was all his rivals saw on the return, sailing through the service games against Evgeny Donskoy, John Isner, Denis Shapovalov and Dominic Thiem to become the Masters 1000 champion who faced the fewest number of break points en route to the title! In fact, Zverev is only the second Masters 1000 champion who lifted the trophy without having to give his serve away, after Roger Federer who accomplished that in Cincinnati in 2012 and 2015.
The Swiss maestro has been the player to beat at the super fast hard courts in Cincinnati ever since the first title he won in 2005 and he pushed the limits there in 2012 when he won the title without losing serve, fending off a break point in the first round against Alex Bogomolov Jr.
and two more versus Stan Wawrinka in the semis. Federer played in Cincinnati for the last time in 2015 and he has managed to repeat what he has done three years earlier, unleashing fury from his serve and playing in fully attacking mode to face just three break points against Feliciano Lopez and none in the other four matches, including wins over Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.
As we already said, Zverev has gone even further in Madrid last week, blasting one +210 km/h serve after another to leave his rivals without any chance on the return, and it would take some special skills from someone else in the future in order to match his numbers, especially when we know that he lost 45 points on serve in total in five clashes, nine per match on average! ALSO READ: ATP Rome: Novak Djokovic makes strong start.
Nishikori and Bedene win