Sci-tech

Anderson stopped in last four of Masters

Anderson stopped in last four of Masters

Zverev becomes only the fifth active player to win at least three Masters 1000 titles - joining the "big four" of Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.

Alexander Zverev and Petra Kvitova hoisted champions trophies this weekend at the Madrid Open.

Thiem started in Madrid, where he made the final a year ago, in rather less convincing fashion.

Rafael Nadal suffered his first clay-court defeat in nearly a year on Friday, when the world No. 1 was shocked 7-5, 6-3 by Austria's Dominic Thiem in the Madrid Masters quarter-finals. Thiem's ground game was as good as it has been all week, and his defence was on point against the powerful Anderson.

"Of course, the loss of last week doesn't help me for Roland Garros".

Zverev already has two Masters 1000 titles to his name, and his greater experience told in the ninth game.

The final was evenly contested, with both players getting three breaks each while saving many more chances.

In my opinion, this head to head record is utterly irrelevant and simply based 12-month clay data, my model liked Zverev as a marginal [2.12] underdog, pricing him up as a [1.76] favourite. The lower-ranked Austrian also won their last meeting (at Rotterdam Open in February last year).

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There was no chance of a let-up from Zverev though and he remained focussed throughout, winning on his first match point when his Austrian opponent returned long.

After conceding an early break for 2-0, Thiem's only sniff came at 5-4 when he opened up 0-30 on the Zverev serve.

"Rafa is the favourite, no matter where he plays, on a clay court", Zverev said.

Thiem lost his second consecutive final at the Caja Magica.

Thiem's confidence was on display in the semi-final Saturday as he dispatched off Kevin Anderson in straight sets - his first win over the American star - in the semi-final.

Anderson is not a natural clay court performer, and didn't really have an answer for a skilled exponent on the surface like Thiem. "Almost everything worked out".

And in his pre-tournament press conference in Rome, he reflected on Nadal's 5-7 3-6 loss to Dominic Thiem in the Spanish capital.

"I think I placed myself in a good position". Previous year I made it to the finals in every single tournament.


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