Teenage Zverev beats Gasquet to win Open Sud de France title
MONTPELLIER, France (AP) Teenage Alexander Zverev beat two-time defending champion Richard Gasquet 7-6 (4), 6-3 to win the Open Sud de France on Sunday and clinch his second career title.
The 19-year-old German’s other title came in September when he beat three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka to win the St. Petersburg Open in Russia.
This time, he denied Gasquet a 15th career title.
Zverev broke the Frenchman’s serve once in each set with the decisive break in the eighth game of the second set, before serving out the match.
”It was a very tough tournament, only one straight-sets match in the whole tournament and it was not an easy one,” Zverev said.
The fourth-seeded Zverev was solid against the third-seeded Gasquet, winning 80 percent of his points on first serve and hitting eight aces.
The 30-year-old Gasquet appeared in his fifth straight final here, having won in 2013 and finishing runner-up the following year.
”He broke me quickly at the beginning of the match. I managed to come back, but he broke me again,” Gasquet said. ”He hits the ball really hard on both sides and has a pretty incredible service. He deserves his victory.”
Zverev, the younger brother of tennis player Mischa Zverev, is considered one of the rising stars of the game and recently took 14-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal to five sets in the third round of the Australian Open.
He still had enough energy left to join his brother for the doubles final, beating Fabrice Martin and Daniel Nestor 6-4, 6-7 (3), 10-7.
”It was a very successful tournament for the Zverevs,” Alexander Zverev said. ”We only dropped one set.”