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Zverev vs Brown ATP Stuttgart live streaming, preview and tips - Zverev tasked with tricky Mercedes Cup opener against dangerous Brown

Andrew Hendrie in ATP Tour 13 Jun 2019
  • Alexander Zverev vs Dustin Brown is live from Stuttgart at 3.00pm local time on Thursday (2.00pm BST)
  • It's the first tour-level meeting between the pair
Alexander Zverev (PA Images)

Alexander Zverev starts his pursuit for a maiden grass-court title on Thursday at the Mercedes Cup in Stuttgart when he squares off against the dangerous Dustin Brown for a place in the quarter-finals.

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Top seed Alexander Zverev has a challenging first match on grass for 2019 as he comes up against the enigmatic Dustin Brown in the second round of the Mercedes Cup in Stuttgart on Thursday.

It hasn’t been a good season for Zverev this year and things could potentially get worse as he opens his grass swing against one of the tour’s most unpredictable players in Stuttgart. Heading into the grass season last year, Zverev had won 34 matches, secured two titles (including the Madrid Masters) and finished up at the Miami Masters, but this year he’s only managed 23 match wins (to 11 losses) and just one title at the lowly 250-event in Geneva just prior to Roland Garros. Zverev also doesn’t have a single top 10 win to his name in 2019, compared to four by this stage in 2018. It’s clear and obvious that Zverev has regressed badly this season, and he’s still not showing any signs that he’s about to turn it around.

After ending 2018 on the highest of highs as he captured the biggest career title of his career at the Nitto ATP Finals in London, defeating Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the process, Zverev was expected to kick on and really establish himself at the very top of men’s tennis, but as mentioned, that just hasn’t come close to happening. The 22-year-old began the year by losing to Milos Raonic in straight sets in the fourth round of the Australian Open and after finishing runner-up in Acapulco, Zverev went on a run of failing to win back-to-back in his next six tournaments before reaching the quarter-finals in Madrid.

It was in Madrid where Zverev revealed he had been dealing with a bunch of off-court distractions, but he also said he had taken care of those - but his results still haven’t really improved. Sure, Zverev ended up winning the title in Geneva and equalled his best result at a slam in making the French Open quarter-finals, but none of those performances or wins were particularly impressive - and he ended up being thrashed by a Djokovic who wasn’t playing too flash himself. Zverev has developed a worrying habit of hanging behind the baseline and simply getting the ball back in play rather than adopting a more aggressive approach and trying to dictate matches on his terms. It certainly suggests a lack of confidence in his game, while his second serve has been very shaky as well. Can he find his game again on grass - a surface that rewards first-strike tennis?

Dustin Brown (PA Images)
Dustin Brown is certainly one man that encapsulates first-strike and fearless tennis. The 34-year-old German-Jamaican has been struggling for his best tennis for a while now and hasn’t been ranked inside the top 100 for almost two years now, but Brown remains capable of jaw-dropping grass-court tennis with his audacious serve-volley game - and could easily go on a run out of nowhere here in Stuttgart. Brown has already won three matches at the Mercedes Cup this week without dropping a set, qualifying for the main draw with wins over Denis Istomin and Gregoire Barrere before taking out John Millman 6-4 7-6(3) for his first tour-level victory of 2019.


Brown is undoubtedly best known for his stunning Wimbledon upsets over the years. He made his first impression at The Championships in 2013 when he took out former champion Lleyton Hewitt on his way to the third round, while he scored the most famous win of his career two years later, producing one of the most memorable performances this decade at Wimbledon as he eliminated Rafael Nadal in four sets in the second round. Unfortunately, the nature of Brown’s game means consistency is never going to be his strong suit - his career-high ranking of No. 64 came back in 2016 after he won the Manchester Challenger and made ATP semi-finals in Gstaad and Montpellier, but as mentioned, he hasn’t been ranked in the top 100 since July 2017, spending half of last year outside the top 200 - although he is back at No. 170 at the moment after winning his eighth Challenger title on the clay of Sophia Antipolis earlier this year.

This will be the first tour-level meeting between Zverev and Brown, and it promises to be a fascinating contest. We all know Zverev is operating well below his best and his struggling to impose himself in matches - and we all know Brown is capable of the sort of tennis that can blow just about anyone off a grass court on his best day. The question is can Brown bring his best tennis to the court on Thursday? Because if he can, Zverev will do very well to survive and make the quarter-finals.


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Zverev vs Brown ATP Stuttgart live streaming, preview and tips - Zverev tasked with tricky Mercedes Cup opener against dangerous Brown

Alexander Zverev starts his pursuit for a maiden grass-court title on Thursday at the Mercedes Cup in Stuttgart when he squares off against the dangerous Dustin Brown for a place in the quarter-finals.

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