Former seven-time Grand Slam champion Mats Wilander questioned Alexander Zverev's motivation following the German's shock Australian Open loss. On Friday, Zverev saw off Radu Albot in straight sets to set up a Denis Shapovalov clash.
After the match, Eurosport's Alize Lim asked Zverev about the sacrificed he had to make in order to make it in tennis. “It’s a sacrifice but it’s something I enjoy doing. I can make good money from it, and good living with it," Zverev said after his third round win over Radu Albot.
On Sunday, Zverev suffered a 6-3 7-6 (5) 6-3 loss to Denis Shapovalov.
Wilander questions Zverev's motivation
“I thought it was interesting when you asked him about sacrifices that you make when you're on tour," Wilander told Lim in Eurosport's Cube.
"I've never really heard Rafa Nadal, Roger Federer or Novak Djokovic mention money and Sascha actually mentioned that ‘yeah being away from home blah blah blah, but it's a good job, I'm gonna make a bunch of money’ and I'm like, whoa, that is interesting”.
After an outstanding 2021 season, Zverev made it clear he wants to win a Grand Slam and reach the top spot in 2022. “Ranking points, championships, I get it. So I hope Sasha gets it together that he actually just doesn't want to be No.
1, but actually needs deep in his heart to be the best player that he can be and doesn't hope that it just comes to him automatically," continued Wilander. “We’re used to this with Rafa and Roger and Novak.
They have set the bar. “They set the bar so high, these three, that we come to expect that's what you have to do. It's so tough to do. “Sascha will find it I think. He will still be No. 1. I think he will win a Slam this year. “It just wasn’t a good day today and we need to figure out why”.