detail-1 Alexander Zverev
#7

Alexander Zverev

Birthday:
1997-04-21
Sexe:
male
Nationality:
Germany
_Height:
198
Ranking:
7
Residence:
Hamburg, Germany

Despite his young age, Alexander Zverev seems on his way to the very top of the ATP rankings.. He had turned pro in 2013, and from then on his performance enhanced rapidly. After already winning five titles in 2017 - including the ATP 1000 tournaments of Rome and Montreal - he could crack both the top 20 and the top 10 within less than one year. Position number 3 has been his best result so far, with lots of room for improvement.

Résultats

Winner

Singles
Year City
2020 Cologne
2019 Geneva
2018 London ATP Finals
2018 Munich
2018 Madrid
2018 Washington
2017 Montpellier
2017 Munich
2017 Rome
2017 Washington
2017 Montreal
2016 St. Petersburg
Doubles
Year City
2019 Acapulco

Finalist

Singles
Year City
2020 US Open
2018 Miami
2018 Rome
2017 Halle
2016 Halle
2016 Nice
Doubles
Year City
2019 Acapulco
2018 Basel
2018 Halle
2016 Montpellier
2015 Munich

 

All You Need to Know about Alexander Zverev

His dad played tennis at the highest level in the former Soviet Union, his mum was known for her brilliant technique, and he grew up watching his older brother becoming a pro. Not only could you think Alexander Zverev was born to be a professional tennis player, he was almost born on a tennis court!

Just a day before she gave birth to her second son, Irina Zvereva hit some balls with her first-born, Mischa, who was a little less than 10 years old at the time. Later that day she was ready for something more important, and when Alexander Sr came back the next morning to their Hamburg apartment, he told Mischa about the little brother who had safely arrived.

Why is Alexander Zverev called Sascha?

That’s how things got going for Alexander Zverev Jr. Tennis was the family business, always and all over the place. When Irina and Alexander Sr emigrated in 1991 from Russia to the beautiful tennis city of Hamburg in northern Germany, it was obvious that their careers as players were over.

But Mischa, by then four years old, had already picked up a racket. He grew into one of the most watched tennis teenagers in Germany, and in 2007 in Melbourne he won his first Grand Slam main draw match at the Australian Open. Little Alexander was with him, along with mum and dad. Mischa called him ‘Sasch’, others went for ‘Sascha’ or ‘Alex’. If you ask him which of those still in use he prefers, he responds: ‘I’m fine with all of them, whatever you like.’

Alexander "Sascha" Zverev at a training session in ParisAlexander "Sascha" Zverev at a training session in Paris

The youngest Zverev had hit some balls with the best in the game long before he played his first official matches on the tour. He was with Mischa when his brother went for practice, so he got to know a lot of guys on tour, and everybody who saw him play came to the same conclusion: the little brother is going to be very, very good. He got the technique from Irina who practiced with him in the beginning, and Alexander Sr took over later and is still Zverev’s main coach.

 

For a while, the former world number one Juan Carlos Ferrero was part of the team, but the relationship ended after six months. The collaboration with the former legend Ivan Lendl lasted three months longer – from summer 2018 to spring 2019 – before Zverev reverted to his dad.

 

‘The reason it works so well with my dad and my family,’ he said some time ago, ‘is that they help a lot on court, and without them I would never be where I am.

It’s still mainly family business with the Zverevs, but Sascha found a way to be his own man early on. ‘The reason it works so well with my dad and my family,’ he said some time ago, ‘is that they help a lot on court, and without them I would never be where I am.

But off-court I do a lot of stuff the way I like it, especially with friends. Dad knows that I need my freedom and that I have to be on my own from time to time.’ Nonetheless, it’s often open-door living in Monte Carlo, where they all own apartments on the same floor: the parents, Mischa and his wife and their young son, and Sascha.

 

In 2014, the British fitness coach Jez Green joined Team Zverev, and has proved a very important addition. Green came with an impressive reference, having turned the once skinny Andy Murray into a well-built athlete capable of lasting long matches.

How tall is Alexander Zverev?

When Zverev started working with Green, he weighed just 74 kilos (163 pounds), which is very little for a man of 1.98 metres (6ft 6in). Green implemented a five-year plan, and his work showed on court. Zverev got stronger by the year, and he now moves remarkably well for a man of his height.

The youngest Zverev had hit some balls with the best in the game long before he played his first official matches on the tour. He was with Mischa when his brother went for practice, so he got to know a lot of guys on tour, and everybody who saw him play came to the same conclusion: the little brother is going to be very, very good. He got the technique from Irina who practiced with him in the beginning, and Alexander Sr took over later and is still Zverev’s main coach.

 

For a while, the former world number one Juan Carlos Ferrero was part of the team, but the relationship ended after six months. The collaboration with the former legend Ivan Lendl lasted three months longer – from summer 2018 to spring 2019 – before Zverev reverted to his dad.

 

It’s still mainly family business with the Zverevs, but Sascha found a way to be his own man early on. ‘The reason it works so well with my dad and my family,’ he said some time ago, ‘is that they help a lot on court, and without them I would never be where I am.

Alexander "Sascha" Zverev at training in ParisAlexander "Sascha" Zverev at training in Paris

But off-court I do a lot of stuff the way I like it, especially with friends. Dad knows that I need my freedom and that I have to be on my own from time to time.’ Nonetheless, it’s often open-door living in Monte Carlo, where they all own apartments on the same floor: the parents, Mischa and his wife and their young son, and Sascha.

 

In 2014, the British fitness coach Jez Green joined Team Zverev, and has proved a very important addition. Green came with an impressive reference, having turned the once skinny Andy Murray into a well-built athlete capable of lasting long matches.

Alexander "Sascha" Zverev hitting a forehand at a training sessionAlexander "Sascha" Zverev hitting a forehand at a training session

When Zverev started working with Green, he weighed just 74 kilos (163 pounds), which is very little for a man of 1.98 metres (6ft 6in). Green implemented a five-year plan, and his work showed on court. Zverev got stronger by the year, and he now moves remarkably well for a man of his height.

 

The Russian-influenced German team with British power now profits from French treatment provided by the physio Hugo Gravil and Brazilian fun time with Marcelo Melo, the top doubles player who is Sascha’s best friend on tour. Lots of languages and voices abound.

Alexander "Sascha" Zverev serivng at the French OpenAlexander "Sascha" Zverev serivng at the French Open

 

When asked in which language he tends dream, Zverev says: ‘Depends on whom I’m dreaming about. Most of the time in Russian and English, I guess.’

 

It’s obvious what he can do on court. With his big serve – allowing for some stuttering phases in 2019 laced with too many double faults – powerful backhand and improving forehand, he has shown he can beat anybody.

 

When tennis came to a halt in March 2020 because of the coronavirus, Alexander Zverev had picked up 11 singles titles, including the Nitto ATP Finals in 2018 and the Masters-1000 titles in Rome, Canada, and Madrid. At 23 and having been ranked as high as 3, he appears to be on the right track. After rough times and setbacks in 2019, including a split with his long-time manager, he reached his first Grand Slam semi-final in Melbourne this year.

 

Ever since he appeared on the tour, the question has been not so much whether this tall, striking young man would win his first Grand Slam title but when. The answer to that question is still up in the air, but one thing is for sure. When it happens, be prepared for a memorable winner’s speech. For Alexander Zverev is not only pretty good with a racket in his hand, but with a microphone as well.

 

 

WORDS BY DORIS HENKEL