Sci-tech

Zverev blitzes Shapovalov to set up Madrid final with Thiem

Zverev blitzes Shapovalov to set up Madrid final with Thiem

Zverev's superb week here in Madrid has considerably boosted his clay data, and now, he looks slightly better than Thiem on clay, on that basis.

First, Zverev will have to turn his attention to Thiem, who advanced to the final with a 6-4, 6-2 win over sixth-seeded South African Kevin Anderson.

Raven Klaasen and doubles partner Michael Venus of New Zealand were knocked out in the quarter-finals earlier in the week, while Anderson was eliminated in the opening round in a rare doubles appearance. "If I had played normal I would have no chance", Thiem said.

Zverev heads into Sunday's final with a chance to become only the fifth active player after Nadal, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray to have won three or more Masters 1000 title. He won 21 matches on clay and 50 sets (in a row).

"A Masters 1000 title would mean a lot to me because it's obviously really tough to win one", Thiem said.

Shapovalov framed a forehand at 30-30 to offer the first break point of the match and Zverev pounced with a crunching backhand return his opponent fended into the net.

The win over Nadal provided important reassurance, Thiem told ATP's official website.

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Having not lost a set yet in the ongoing tournament, he will be hoping to better his record against Thiem.

He said: I just couldn't maintain my level from the match against Rafa and the match yesterday against Anderson.

In the victory, Thiem won 86 percent of his first serve points and 72 percent of his second serve points.

Nonetheless, Zverev has transformed into a consistent player on tour, taking down big names at will, ever since.

Thiem was the last man to take a defeat, or take a set off, Nadal previous year in Rome before the Spaniard began his streak, and he was the man who ended it on Friday, nearly 12 months later. Thiem has won eight of his last 10 matches on clay court.

Kvitova outlasted Bertens 7-6 (6), 4-6, 6-3 in a grueling final decided when the unseeded Dutch player hit a backhand long on the final point after almost three hours. "Now I'm in the finals again, which is fantastic for me.". Zverev dismissed Miami Open presented by Itau champion John Isner and #NextGenATP Canadian Denis Shapovalov in straight sets in the quarter-finals and semi-finals, respectively."I'm playing quite well". "So far it's been pretty good for me on clay this year".