Zverev Before Going For Munich Three-Peat: ‘My Game Is Pretty Much Back’
Reigning Nitto ATP Finals champion Alexander Zverev arrives at the BMW Open by FWU without having won multiple matches at a tournament since reaching the Acapulco final the first weekend of March. But the two-time defending champion will hope that returning home to Munich, where he has enjoyed plenty of success, will help him get back on track.
“Obviously I didn’t play my best the past few weeks. But I feel good on the court, I’m happy on the court and this is the most important thing,” Zverev said. “I feel like my game is pretty much back on the practice courts in the way I hit the ball, but I just have to show it in the matches. I think I’ll have a few very tough matches and if I win them, I think I’m in good shape and good form. We’ll see how it goes.”
The top seed has won 11 of his past 12 matches in Munich, and he will look to add to that when he faces Cordoba champion Juan Ignacio Londero or German wild card Maximilian Marterer in the second round. Sixth seed Diego Schwartzman, a dangerous clay-court foe who triumphed at the ATP 500 tournament in Rio de Janeiro last year, is the first seeded player Zverev could face.
Zverev’s countryman Jan-Lennard Struff, who defeated the World No. 3 in Indian Wells, is in the same half of the draw, as are third seed and 2018 Roland Garros semi-finalist Marco Cecchinato and eighth seed Marton Fucsovics.
“Especially in Munich, the draw is always very, very difficult and there are always a lot of good players. And even the past two years when I won I had to go through a lot of tough matches and a lot of great players and great opponents,” Zverev said. “For me, it’s great to be here but I know it’s not going to be an easy week and I’m looking forward to it.”
There are six players inside the Top 25 of the ATP Rankings overall, with Russian Karen Khachanov of Russia the second seed. Khachanov could face a stiff test in his opening match, as he could potentially face three-time titlist Philipp Kohlschreiber, who has emerged victorious at this ATP 250 tournament more than any other player. Kohlschreiber plays Italian Andreas Seppi in the first round.
Nineteen of the 28 competitors in the main draw have won an ATP Tour title, with two-time titlist Matteo Berrettini lifting the Hungarian Open trophy in Budapest on Sunday. But the favourite will be Zverev, who is pursuing his first crown of 2019.
The home favourite is trying to win his third title at a single tournament for the first time (he has also won the Citi Open twice). The only other player to triumph in Munich three times is fellow German Kohlschreiber, who is on the opposite side of the draw. No player has lifted the trophy here in three consecutive years.
“It’s always a great feeling when you know you’ve done this here and you know that you normally play well here and this gives you confidence,” Zverev said. “This is exactly what I need and I’m happy to be here.”