Ivan Lendl told bad jokes in training, says Alexander Zverev

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Ivan Lendl told bad jokes in training, says Alexander Zverev

In an interview with Tennishead, Alexander Zverev spoke about his co-operation with the eight-time Grand Slam winner Ivan Lendl. The German player and the naturalised American split after Wimbledon as the 22-year-old claimed Lendl was not too strict in training.

“I’ve always pushed myself very hard," Zverev explained. "He actually had to stop me sometimes. He always said: ‘You’re probably one of the hardest-working players I’ve ever worked with.’ I don’t need somebody extra to push me.

I’m very motivated, I’m very determined and I know what it takes. For me, it’s more about working smart than working hard”. Asked if Lendl used to tell bad jokes in training, Zverev replied: “Yes, 100 per cent.

And he liked to retell them 50 times”. On his eating and drinking regime, Zverev added: “I’m very careful. For me, it’s about not losing weight so much as gaining weight. I can lose weight very easily, so I have to have a diet where I eat enough calories, enough protein.

I want to keep my weight between 86 and 90 kilos. I can very easily go under that if I play long, tough matches. At the beginning of the year, I was sick and lost eight kilos in two weeks. I obviously have to eat healthily. I’m obviously not going to eat fast food, but I have to eat a good amount”.