ATP Dubai: Alexander Zverev tops Lorenzo Sonego and reaches semi-final


Alexander Zverev is playing his best tournament since hurting his ankle at the last year’s Roland Garros. The German is through to the final four in Dubai following a 7-5, 6-4 triumph over Lorenzo Sonego in an hour and 52 minutes. Zverev came to Dubai with a mediocre 3-6 score in 2023, struggling to find his form and link a couple of good matches. The German is finally back on track in Dubai, scoring much-needed three wins and remaining on the title course. Zverev won 14 points more than Sonego, firing 25 service winners and taming his strokes nicely. The German landed 82% of the first serve in and fixed a poor performance on the second serve by saving all six break points. The pressure was on Sonego, and he could not force a decider after losing serve once in each set. The Italian had a 40-0 lead on the return in the second set’s tenth game before the German claimed five straight points to emerge at the top.

Alexander Zverev took down Lorenzo Sonego in straight sets in Dubai.

Alexander wasted a break point in the encounter’s first game with a loose forehand. He fended off three break points in game two to avoid an early setback and remain on the positive side. Lorenzo held after deuce in game five for 3-2 and fired a service winner in game seven to stay in front. Alexander responded with a hold at love in game eight and landed a forehand winner at 4-5 to prolong the set. The first break of serve came in the 11th game when Sonego sprayed a costly forehand error that sent him 6-5 behind. Zverev served for the set in game 12 and forced the rival’s mistake to wrap it up 7-5 in an hour. Both players served well at the start of the second set to lock the result at 2-2.

Alexander stepped in on the return in game five and cracked a backhand down the line winner to deliver a crucial break. Former world no. 2 held at 15 in game six to cement the lead and make another big step toward the finish line. Alexander painted an ace down the T line in game eight for 5-3, forcing Lorenzo to serve to stay in the match. The Italian held at 30 in game nine to prolong the action and created three break points on the return at 4-5. It was Zverev’s first loose service game since the encounter’s opening stages, and he stayed calm to get out of jail. Sonego missed a massive opportunity on the third break point, allowing his rival to reach deuce. Alexander created a match point with an unreturned serve and sealed the deal with an ace for his first ATP semi-final since June last year.

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