Nadal to face Ruud in French Open final after horrific Zverev injury

Rafael Nadal booked his place in a 14th French Open final after Alexander Zverev was forced to retire injured from their last-four clash on Friday.

A thoroughly gripping contest was unfolding at Roland Garros, where birthday boy Nadal had taken a mammoth opening set 7-6(8) after 91 minutes.

The Spaniard, who turned 36 on Friday, had just forced a second successive tie-break as the match entered its fourth hour when Zverev suffered a horrific fall on his right ankle.

A harrowing yell echoed around Chatrier as the German was immediately tended to by the medical team, before leaving the court in a wheelchair.

The third seed subsequently returned on crutches a few minutes later to reluctantly concede; making Nadal the oldest male finalist at Roland Garros since William Tilden in 1930.

Appearing in his fifth Grand Slam semi-final, Zverev made a confident start by breaking Nadal in the opening game on the way to leading 4-2.

Although, he was forced to rescue three set points after his opponent broke back to edge 5-4 ahead. The third seed then surged into a 6-2 lead in the tie-break, but saw four set points go begging as Nadal clung on before drawing first blood.

The 13-time champion had prevailed in 269 of his previous 276 matches when winning the opening set in a Slam.

He would continue that impressive record, but only after an equally tight second set that also went to a tie-break after Zverev had led 4-2.

And the 25-year-old’s wait for a maiden Slam goes on following his untimely fall – after which he was unable to place any weight on his right foot.

Through to major final number 30, Nadal will face Casper Ruud after the Norwegian advanced to his first such showpiece.

The eighth seed beat Marin Cilic 3-6 6-4 6-2 6-2 to become the first male player from his country to reach the final of a Slam – and first from Scandinavia since Sweden’s Robin Soderling in 2010.

Ruud was broken twice in the opening set by Cilic, who was the fifth active player on the ATP tour to appear in the semi-finals of all four Slams.

But unforced errors plagued the former US Open champion, who registered 56 throughout the contest.

Ruud capitalised by levelling before seizing control by breaking opponent twice in the third set.

Although play was temporarily suspended due to a protester evading security, the Norwegian’s momentum could not be stopped as he breezed through to a first major Championship match.

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Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev will square off in a mouth-watering opening Semi-Finals of the 2022 French Open on Friday.

All odds were against Nadal prior to his box office encounter with Novak Djokovic in the Quarter-Finals. He struggled with fitness issues prior to the French Open and then was taken to the distance by Auger Aliassime in the Round of 16.

However, Nadal managed to overcome all of these and put in an impressive display against Djokovic, beating the Serb 3-1.

This has definitely been a hugely satisfying result for Nadal as he got his revenge after losing to Djokovic in the Semi-Finals of the French Open last year.

Nadal’s sole defeat in the Semi-Finals at Roland Garros came against Djokovic last year. One interesting fact is that Nadal has never managed to win the French Open and the Australian Open in the same season and he is now just two matches away to achieve that.

Zverev had also been an underdog in the Quarter-Finals as he had to face the in-form Carlos Alcaraz. He won the match in four sets and showed how much damage he can do if he is able to play his best tennis.

The victory against Alcaraz ended Zverev’s poor record against the top 10 players in Grand Slams. Prior to that win, the German has lost 11 consecutive matches against such players.

Zverev has suffered two defeats in his three Semi-Final matches on clay this year and his sole Semi-Final match here at the French Open ended as a defeat against Tsitsipas last year.

We expect a tight contest so our prediction is Over 35.5 Games at odds of 3/4 with Bet365.

Nadal v Zverev is available to watch via a live stream on desktop, mobile or tablet devices from approximately 1.45pm BST.

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Alexander Zverev will take on emerging sensation Carlos Alcaraz in the Quarter-Finals of the 2022 French Open on Tuesday.

Zverev has once again survived a big scare in the round of 16 as he was heavily tested by Zapata Miralles. The Spaniard had more break point chances than Zverev and had several opportunities to win at least two sets, but wasn’t able to capitalize.

Zverev had to battle through his previous three matches at Roland Garros, despite winning the most recent two in straight sets. The German has already played three tie-breakers throughout the tournament and he unexpectedly dropped two sets against Baez in the second round.

Zverev was one of the best players in the ATP circuit last year, but he hasn’t been performing anywhere near that level in 2022.

On the contrary, Alcaraz extended his winning streak to 14 matches after his comfortable 3-0 victory over Khachanov in the Round of 16. Alcaraz has only dropped two sets in four matches on Parisian clay so far, which were against compatriot Ramos in the second round.

With his victory over Khachanov, Alcaraz became the youngest player to reach quarterfinal appearances in more than one Grand Slam since Andrei Medvedev back in 1994.

Alcaraz established himself as the main challenger to Djokovic and Nadal, especially after beating both of them recently.

Our prediction for this match is Over 3.5 Sets at odds of 3/4 with Bet365.

Zverev v Alcaraz is available to watch via a live stream on desktop, mobile or tablet devices from approximately 2.00 pm BST.

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World No.3 Alexander Zverev will face Beranbe Zapata Miralles on Sunday at 13.30pm (UK Time) in the Round of 16 of the French Open 2022.

Alexander Zverev’s performances over the past month and a half can be described as a mixed bag of results. The German has reached the semifinals in Monte Carlo and Rome, and finished as runner-up to Alcaraz in Madrid, but he also was knocked out in the opening round in Munich.

Even here in Paris, Zverev has struggled with inconsistency as he started with a comfortable 3-0 win over Ofner in the first round before losing the opening two sets against Baez in the second round. However, he managed to come back and win that match in five sets but then he needed two tie breaks against Nakashima in the 3rd round.

Zverev’s only loss in the Round of 16 at the French Open came at the hands of Sinner back in 2020.

On the other hand, Bernabe Zapata Miralles has already played six matches on the Parisian courts so far this season. The Spaniard came through qualifiers where he has dropped just one set in three matches.

On the main draw, Zapata Miralles dispatched three American players so far in the shape of Mmoh, Fritz, and John Isner. This is actually the first time in his career when he has won two consecutive main-draw matches in tour-level events.

Our prediction for this match is Over 28.5 Games at odds of 6/10 with Bet365.

Zverev v Zapata Miralles is available to watch via a live stream on desktop, mobile or tablet devices from approximately 13.30 pm BST.

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Alexander Zverev progressed to the French Open fourth round for a fifth successive year after beating Brandon Nakashima in straight sets on Friday.

Zverev was given a scare by Sebastian Baez in the second round; the third seed forced to recover from two sets down to deny the Argentine.

However, he built on the momentum of that comeback against Roland Garros debutant Nakashima.

The German hit 18 aces on the way to a 7-6(2) 6-3 7-6(5) victory over the world number 75.

Next up for Zverev is world number 131 Bernabe Zapata Miralles, who added to his scalp of 13th seed Taylor Fritz by denying an American in John Isner to reach the last 16 at a Slam for the first time.

Meanwhile, 13-time champion Rafael Nadal won 87 per cent of his points on first serve as he made it nine sets without reply in a commanding 6-3 6-2 6-4 victory over Botic Van De Zandschlup.

The Spaniard will play Felix Auger-Aliassime in the fourth round, where the ninth seed shall appear for the first time at Roland Garros after beating Filip Krajinovic in straight sets.

Reigning champion Novak Djokovic also made it nine consecutive sets after sweeping world number 195 Aljaz Bedene aside 6-3 6-3 6-2; setting up a clash with Diego Schwartzman after the 15th seed overcame Grigor Dimitrov 6-3 6-1 6-2.

Carlos Alcaraz secured his maiden last-16 appearance in the French capital with a straight-sets victory over Sebastian Korda. The sixth seed will face Karen Khachanov, who booked his place in round four for the fifth time in six years after denying Cam Norrie.

In the ladies’ draw, 18-year-old Coco Gauff made it six sets without reply as she overcame veteran Kaia Kanepi 6-3 6-4 to set up a last-16 clash with Elise Mertens.

Jil Teichmann is through to round four at a Slam for the first time after denying Victoria Azarenka in a tie-break. The Swiss’ reward is a date with 2018 runner-up Sloane Stephens, who ended the hopes of home favourite Diane Parry 6-2 6-3.

Leylah Fernandez became the first Canadian female player to reach the last 16 at Roland Garros in eight years after beating Olympic gold medallist Belinda Bencic 7-5 3-6 7-5.

The US Open runner-up will play Amanda Anisimova after the 2019 semi-finalist defeated Karolina Muchova, who was forced to retire through injury during the third set of their clash.

After defeating Emma Raducanu in round two, Aliaksandra Sasnovich put Angelique Kerber to the sword in straight sets for her maiden fourth-round appearance in the French capital.

Next up for her is Rabat champion Martina Trevisan, who became the first Italian woman to record eight successive victories since Francesca Schiavone (2017) after seeing off Daria Saville 6-3 6-4.

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French Open 2022 Day Six Results

Friday May 27

Third Round

COURT PHILIPPE-CHATRIER
Belinda BENCIC (SUI) [14] 5-7 6-3 5-7 Leylah FERNANDEZ (CAN) [17]
Novak DJOKOVIC (SER) [1] 6-3 6-3 6-2 Aljaz BEDENE (SLOV)
Sloane STEPHENS (USA) 6-2 6-3 Diane PARRY (FRA)
Sebastian KORDA (USA) [27] 4-6 4-6 2-6 Carlos ALCARAZ (ESP) [6]

COURT SUZANNE-LENGLEN
Amanda ANISIMOVA (USA) [27] 6-7(7) 6-2 3-0 Ret. Karolina MUCHOVA (CZE)
Coco GAUFF (USA) [18] 6-3 6-4 Kaia KANEPI (EST)
Botic VAN DE ZANDSCHLUP (NED) [26] 3-6 2-6 4-6 Rafael NADAL (ESP) [5]
Alexander ZVEREV (GER) [3] 7-6(2) 6-3 7-6(5) Brandon NAKASHIMA (USA)

COURT SIMONE-MATHIEU
Grigor DIMITROV (BUL) [18] 3-6 1-6 2-6 Diego SCHWARTZMAN (ARG) [15]
Angelique KERBER (GER) [21] 4-6 6-7(5) Aliaksandra SASNOVICH
Victoria AZARENKA [15] 6-4 5-7 6-7(6) Jil TEICHMANN (SUI) [23]
Cam NORRIE (GBR) [10] 2-6 5-7 7-5 4-6 Karen KHACHANOV [21]

COURT 7
Varvara GRACHEVA 2-6 3-6 Elise MERTENS (BEL) [31]
John ISNER (USA) [23] 4-6 6-3 4-6 7-6(5) 3-6 Bernabe ZAPATA MIRALLES (ESP)

COURT 14
Martina TREVISAN (ITA) 6-3 6-4 Daria SAVILLE (AUS)
Felix AUGER-ALIASSIME (CAN) [9] 7-6(3) 7-6(2) 7-5 Filip KRAJINOVIC (SRB)

Alexander Zverev produced an inspired turnaround from two sets down to defeat Sebastian Baez and reach the French Open third round on Wednesday.

The third seed was in danger of an early exit at Roland Garros, where 21-year-old debutant Baez made an inspired start on Chatrier.

The world number 36, who claimed his maiden ATP title at the Estoril Open last month, rose to the occasion by taking the opening two sets 6-2 6-4.

Zverev overturned such a deficit on two previous occasions in his career; doing so against Oscar Otte in round one of last year’s event, and Pablo Carreno Busta in the 2019 US Open semi-finals.

The German responded in dominant fashion as he dropped just three games to force a fifth set, which he shaded to prevail a 2-6 4-6 6-1 6-2 7-5 winner, and has now won eight of his nine matches in the French capital to have gone five.

Diego Schwartzman also recovered from two sets down; the 15th seed beating Jaume Munar 2-6 6-7(3) 6-2 6-2 6-2.

Meanwhile, sixth seed Carlos Alcaraz survived a scare to overcome compatriot Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-1 6-7(7) 5-7 7-6(2) 6-4 in a mammoth clash that lasted four hours and 34 minutes.

There were no such problems for 13-time winner Rafael Nadal, who racked up the 300th Grand Slam victory of his career after putting Corentin Moutet to the sword 6-3 6-1 6-4.

Reigning champion Novak Djokovic also prevailed in straight sets against Alex Molcan, as did Felix Auger-Aliassime and Cam Norrie against Camilo Ugo Carabelli and Jason Kubler respectively.

Over in the Ladies’ draw, world number three Maria Sakkari – a semi-finalist at Roland Garros 12 months ago – was stunned 7-6(5) 7-6(4) by Karolina Muchova, who maintained her 100 per cent record against top-three opponents (four wins from four).

US Open champion Emma Raducanu also fell in the second round; going down 3-6 6-1 6-1 as an inspired Aliaksandra Sasnovich advanced to the last 32 in the French capital for the first time.

Olympic gold medallist Belinda Bencic beat Bianca Andreescu 6-2 6-4 and three-time Grand Slam winner Angelique Kerber overcame Elsa Jacquemot 6-1 7-6(2), while Victoria Azarenka was also a straight-sets winner against Andrea Petkovic.

WATCH ALL FRENCH OPEN MATCHES STREAMED LIVE HERE (18+)

French Open 2022 Day Three Results

Wednesday May 25

Second Round

COURT PHILIPPE-CHATRIER
Angelique KERBER (GER) [21] 6-1 7-6(2) Elsa JACQUEMOT (FRA)
Alexander ZVEREV (GER) [3] 2-6 4-6 6-1 6-2 7-5 Sebastian BAEZ (ARG)
Belinda BENCIC (SUI) [14] 6-2 6-4 Bianca ANDREESCU (CAN)
Corentin MOUTET (FRA) 3-6 1-6 4-6 Rafael NADAL (ESP) [5]

COURT SUZANNE-LENGLEN
Aliaksandra SASNOVICH 3-6 6-1 6-1 Emma RADUCANU (GBR) [12]
Karolina MUCHOVA (CZE) 7-6(5) 7-6(4) Maria SAKKARI (GRE) [4]
Novak DJOKOVIC (SRB) [1] 6-2 6-3 7-6(4) Alex MOLCAN (SVK)
Sebastian KORDA (USA) [27] 7-6(5) 6-3 6-3 Richard GASQUET (FRA)

COURT SIMONNE-MATHIEU
John ISNER (USA) [23] 6-4 6-4 3-6 7-6(5) Gregoire BARRERE (FRA)
Coco GAUFF (USA) [18] 6-1 7-6(4) Alison VAN UYTVANCK (BEL)
Albert RAMOS-VINOLAS (ESP) 1-6 7-6(7) 7-5 6-7(2) 4-6 Carlos ALCARAZ (ESP) [6]
Camila OSORIO (COL) 3-6 3-6 Diane PARRY (FRA)

COURT 6
Olga DANILOVIC (SRB) 4-6 1-6 Jil TEICHMANN (SUI)[23]
Cameron NORRIE (GBR)[10] 6-3 6-4 6-3 Jason KUBLER (AUS)
Katerina SINIAKOVA (CZE) 3-6 2-6 Leylah FERNANDEZ (CAN)[17]
Botic VAN DE ZANDSCHULP (NED)[26] 6-4 7-6(2) 3-2 Ret. Fabio FOGNINI (ITA)

COURT 7
Felix AUGER-ALIASSIME (CAN)[9] 6-0 6-3 6-4 Camilo UGO CARABELLI (ARG)
Amanda ANISIMOVA (USA)[27] 6-4 6-1 Donna VEKIC (CRO)
Jaume MUNAR (ESP) 6-2 7-6(3) 2-6 2-6 2-6 Diego SCHWARTZMAN (ARG)[15]
Daria SAVILLE (AUS) 6-4 6-2 Petra KVITOVA (CZE)[32]

COURT 9
Aljaz BEDENE (SLO) 4-6 6-4 7-6(5) 6-4 Pablo CUEVAS (URU)
Alja TOMLJANOVIC (AUS) 4-6 7-6(5) 5-7 Varvara GRACHEVA

COURT 12
Borna GOJO (CRO) 6-7(5) 2-6 7-5 1-6 Filip KRAJINOVIC (SRB)
Marie BOUZKOVA (CZE) w/d-w/o Elise MERTENS (BEL)[31]

COURT 13
Hugo DELLIEN (BOL) 6-4 4-6 6-7(1) 3-6 Karen KHACHANOV[21]
Beatriz HADDAD MAIA (BRA) 4-6 4-6 Kaia KANEPI (EST)
Brandon NAKASHIMA (USA) 7-6(6) 6-4 6-2 Tallon GRIEKSPOOR (NED)
Magda LINETTE (POL) 3-6 2-6 Martina TREVISAN (ITA)

COURT 14
Victoria AZARENKA [15] 6-1 7-6(3) Andrea PETKOVIC (GER)
Bernabe ZAPATA MIRALLES (ESP) 3-6 6-2 6-2 6-3 Taylor FRITZ (USA)[13]
Sorana CIRSTEA (ROU)[26] 6-3 2-6 0-6 Sloane STEPHENS (USA)
Grigor DIMITROV (BUL)[18] 6-0 6-4 6-3 Borna CORIC (CRO)

Alexander Zverev and Stefanos Tsitsipas go head to head once more in the pick of the matches on semi-final Saturday at the Italian Open.

It promises to be an exciting climax in the men’s draw with four of the top five seeds remaining.

For the third time in the space of a month, Zverev and Tsitsipas collide in an ATP 1000 semi-final.

The previous two encounters were shared with Tsitsipas prevailing on the way to winning in Monte Carlo, while Zverev exacted his revenge in Madrid last week.

We can expect another mouth-watering showdown between players who boast a combined five Masters titles on clay.

Although Tsitsipas, who has the most wins on the ATP this year (30), leads the head-to-head 7-4 and has won three of their four clashes on surface.

Meanwhile, 37-time Masters champion Novak Djokovic is aiming to become only the fifth player in ATP history to record 1,000 match wins when he takes on Casper Ruud.

A five-time winner in Rome, this is Djokovic’s ninth successive semi-final in the Italian capital, while fifth seed Ruud is set for his fourth Masters semi on clay.

Only the third player to win 20+ straight WTA 1000 matches (26), the red-hot Iga Swiatek continues her quest for a fifth title of 2022 against Aryna Sabalenka.

The reigning champion is also the second-youngest player to reach four WTA 1000 semi-finals in a single season – after Caroline Wozniacki in 2010.

Meanwhile, Sabalenka has enjoyed a timely upturn in fortunes. The third seed had never previous progressed beyond round three in Rome, while she returned to the Italian capital off the back of a first-round exit in Madrid last week.

But she has won each of her last three semi-finals on clay, which will stand her in good stead as she looks to end Swiatek’s relentless streak.

Ons Jabeur – champion in Madrid – is seeking a record-extending 17th victory on clay this season, and 11th on the spin.

Standing in her way is world number 23 Daria Kasatkina, who defeated second seed Paula Badosa on the way to reaching her first semi-final in Rome.

Play gets underway at 11am BST on Saturday with all matches contested over the best of three sets in Rome.

Alexander Zverev will be looking for another flawless victory at the 2022 Australian Open when he takes on Radu Albot on Friday.

Zverev has had a fantastic 2021 with a career-best six ATP titles. The German player ended 2021 with an excellent performance in the ATP Finals where he defeated both Djokovic and Medvedev to win his 19th ATP tour title.

He began the new year in a similar manner, having won four of his first five matches on hard courts. Zverev managed to secure two consecutive 3-0 victories at the Australian Open 2022 so far, although he had to play two tie-breakers against Altmaier on the opening round.

Albot, on the other hand, has already won five matches at the Australian Open as he had to play throughout the qualifying stages. As expected, Albot was the underdog in both his matches in the main draw but proved the bookies wrong by winning both while dropping just one set in the process.

Albot’s record on the hard surface over the past two months reads 12 victories and just three defeats in his last 15 matches.

Unfortunately, Albot has a daunting task here against Zverev and his record in Grand Slams hasn’t been great at all. The Moldovan player has never progressed beyond the 3rd round in Grand Slams.

Our prediction is Under 28.5 Games at odds of 4/5 with Bet365.

Zverev v Albot is available to watch via a live stream on desktop, mobile or tablet devices from approximately 5am GMT.

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Alexander Zverev takes on John Millman in the second round of the 2022 Australian Open on Wednesday at 9.30am (UK Time).

Zverev has won six of his last seven matches on hard courts, including a straight-set victory over Altmaier in the opening round of the Australian Open 2022. Zverev needed two hours and 41 minutes to defeat Altmaier, as he had to play two tie-breakers. Last year at the Australian Open, the German only managed to reach the quarter-finals where he lost in four sets against Novak Djokovic.

Zverev has been one of the best performers on hard courts in 2021, having won 4 titles in the process, including the Olympics and Cincinnati.

Millman, on the other hand, was on a five-match losing streak on hard courts prior to his 3-1 victory over Feliciano Lopez in the first round here in Melbourne. Millman hasn’t performed very well on hard courts last season and his most recent title on this surface was in 2020 in Nur-Sultan in Kazakhstan.

Milman’s best performance in a Grand Slam was in 2018 when he had an amazing run before reaching the quarter-finals.

This should be a comfortable match for the German, so we fancy Alexander Zverev to win 3-0 at odds of 53/100 with Bet365.

Zverev v Millman is available to watch via a live stream on desktop, mobile or tablet devices from approximately 9.30am GMT.

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Alexander Zverev will take on Daniil Medvedev in the final of the 2021 Nitto ATP Finals on Sunday at 4.00 pm (UK Time).

Alexander Zverev didn’t have a clean run in the group stages, but he produced a stunning performance against Novak Djokovic in the semifinals. This was Zverev’s second three-set victory over Nole after beating the Serb in the semifinal at the Tokyo Olympics. Zverev has gone 25-4 on the main tour since then and two of these four defeats came at the hands of none other than Daniil Medvedev.

The German is used with tough tests here at the ATP Finals, as he defeated Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the semifinal and final back in 2018.

After scoring three victories in the group stages, Daniil Medvedev had an en easy match against Casper Ruud in the semifinals. A victory here over Zverev would make Medvedev the first unbeaten champion in ATP Finals since Djokovic back in 2014.

The Russian is currently on a nine-match winning run in the ATP Finals, including a 2-1 victory over Zverev in the group stages. Daniil Medvedev should feel confident ahead of this clash as he has won the last five meetings with Zverev on hard courts.

We expect a contested match between these two so our prediction is Over 22.5 Games at odds of 3/4 with Bet365.

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