Zverev is the Man to Beat
At the London ATP Finals, Zverev has won the biggest title of his young career. It wasn’t without a little controversy though. During the second set tie-break, and in the middle of a point, a ball boy on Roger’s side of the court dropped a ball. It was out of Federer’s line of site, but not out of Zverev’s. So, as any other player would have done, he stopped the point. The crowd was not pleased and Zverev was booed. Federer has since come in his defense, and rightly so. It was totally in his right to stop the point. Unfortunately for Federer, Zverev served an ace on the replay of the point. Nevertheless, this match was not for Federer to win, and neither was the final Djokovic’s to win.
Although Djokovic was the heavy favorite in the finals given how well he’s been playing this year, Zverev came in with a secret weapon. That secret weapon is Ivan Lendl. Ivan Lendl has eight Grand Slams to his name as a player, and three Grand Slam titles to his name coaching Andy Murray. Murray’s career can be defined as before Lendl and after Lendl. This is how much of an impact Lendl made on Murray’s career. Well, now it looks like it’s time for Zverev to reap the rewards of Lendl’s coaching.
Lendl started working with Zverev before the US Open. However, it seems that the fruits of his labor with the youngster didn’t materialize until last week. Zverev tore through the world’s elite. Although he lost his first match against Djokovic in the round robin, he didn’t drop a set thereafter, beating Cilic, Isner, Federer, and finally Djokovic in the final.
As we head into 2019, I suspect Zverev is going to be a man to be reckoned with. If history is any indicator, Lendl knows how to coach. Also, we know that Zverev is hungry, athletic, and talented. All he really needed was a little direction. If I was Nadal, Federer, Murray, Wawrinka, Del Potro and Djokovic, I’d be making some room for this youngster. He’ll win a Grand Slam or two in 2019.