Fritz Figures Out Berrettini, Zverev Overcomes Murray Challenge


No. 3 seed Alexander Zverev fought past a spirited effort from three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray in Stadium 1 on Tuesday afternoon, recovering from a break down in both sets to advance 6-4, 7-6(4).

Murray, a wild card entrant this week at the BNP Paribas Open as he endeavors to work his way back to the top of the game, was quick to capitalize on patchy play from the German, racing out to an early 3-0 lead. Zverev, however, cut out the loose errors and began rushing the net with intent, successfully finishing off aggressive baseline points with accurate volleying out of Murray’s reach.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021 – Andy Murray plays Alexander Zverev on day 8 of the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, California. (Kathryn Riley/BNP Paribas Open)

In the blink of an eye, the set was Zverev’s.

The two-time Wimbledon, one-time US Open champ started off the second set similar to the first, digging deep and feeding off the energy of a partisan crowd firmly in his corner. Though Zverev would once again battle back and put himself in position to serve for the match in the twelfth game, a vintage Murray lob elicited an overhead error, securing a break back and sending the second set into a tiebreak.

This time it would be Zverev with the early lead, which he’d ultimately hold on to. In one last crowd-pleasing point, the players exchanged several quick-fire volleys on match point before Murray floated the last shot long, handing the 2020 US Open finalist the win after two hours of enthralling tennis.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021 – Matteo Berrettini and Taylor Fritz play a Round 3 match at Stadium 2 on day 9 of the 2021 BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, CA. (Michael Cummo/BNP Paribas Open)

Earlier in the day, California’s very own Taylor Fritz caused one of the upsets of the men’s singles tournament so far, kicking off play on Tuesday with a spectacular win over No. 5 seed Matteo Berrettini, 6-4, 6-3.

The American, whose ranking has hovered around the Top 30 for the larger part of his still-young career, scored one of his best wins of his 2021 season with an impressive display of tactical discipline against the 2021 Wimbledon finalist.

Berrettini’s forehand is one of the most devastating shots in tennis – explosive power laced with punishing topspin – but Fritz wisely targeted the Italian’s weaker backhand wing right out of the great, yielding great results early on as he sprinted to a quick 4-1 lead.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021 – Matteo Berrettini and Taylor Fritz play a Round 3 match at Stadium 2 on day 9 of the 2021 BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, CA. (Michael Cummo/BNP Paribas Open)

Although the Rancho Santa Fe native surrendered his first-set advantage as he attempted to close it out, another last-minute break of the Berrettini serve was perfectly timed to ultimately claim the set. Fritz’s efficiency in all aspects…

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Read More: Fritz Figures Out Berrettini, Zverev Overcomes Murray Challenge 2021-10-13 01:02:29

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