Heading to Cincinnati with a miserable 0-6 score, Alexander Zverev turned the tables this week and reached the final of the Western & Southern Open, facing Andrey Rublev in the ninth Masters 1000 final. Alexander toppled Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 after two hours and 41 minutes, overcoming physical issues and a 5-3 deficit in the decider to cross the finish line first and beat the Greek for the third time in their ninth meeting.
The German fired 42 winners and 38 unforced errors, although there was not much to separate them, as they both claimed 105 points. Both players struggled on the second serve, and they broke each other four times to stay neck and neck throughout the encounter.
Alexander served well in the opener and claimed it with a single break at 2-2. From 40-15, Stefanos lost four straight points to suffer a break and push his rival in front. Zverev held at 15 to cement the lead and did the same at 4-3 to stay ahead.
Alexander Zverev survived stern test from Stefanos Tsitsipas to reach final.
Tsitsipas brought the ninth game home following a couple of deuces, and Alexander fired an ace in the next one to claim the opener 6-4. The Greek left the court and returned eight minutes later, which did not make his rival a happy camper.
Zverev grabbed a break in the second set's opening game and repelled three break chances in the next one to open a 6-4, 2-0 lead. Tsitsipas secured his first break of serve at 1-2 to get back into contention and placed a forehand down the line winner in game six to forge a 4-2 advantage.
Zverev held at love at 2-5 before Tsitsipas wrapped up the set with a forehand winner in game nine to force a decider. In those moments, the Greek had the upper hand on the court and broke at 1-1 when Alexander placed a tired backhand into the net.
Stefanos held at love and broke again to build a 4-1 advantage and move closer to the finish line. In one of the pivotal moments, Zverev saved Tsitsipas' game point in the next one and pulled one break back with a backhand winner.
Stefanos held at 15 in game eight to open a 5-3 gap and put his rival under pressure. Alexander was not ready to go away, and he broke back in game ten following a costly double fault from his opponent. Tsitsipas held in game 12 after a couple of deuces to set a tie break, where Zverev forged a 6-3 lead with a service winner.
Tsitsipas sprayed a backhand error at 4-6 to propel his rival over the top and miss a massive opportunity to fight for the second Masters 1000 title.