Andy Murray looks for his first win over a top-10 opponent in more than three years as he takes on…
Andy Murray looks for his first win over a top-10 opponent in more than three years as he takes on world no. 7 Alexander Zverev at the Western & Southern Open.
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Murray vs Zverev is live from Cincinnati on Monday 24 August
After claiming a hard-fought win over Frances Tiafoe in his first official singles match of 2020, Andy Murray will face a top-10 player in the form of Alexander Zverev, with a place in the last 16 at the Cincinnati-New York Masters on the line.
Murray last defeated a top-10 player at the French Open in 2017, before the lengthy battle with injury which almost saw him retire at the Australian Open in 2019 and now sees him attempting to rebuild his career with a metal hip. During Murray’s absence from the top echelons, Alexander Zverev has emerged as a force at the top of the game. Can he impose his authority on the rusty Murray on Monday?
Read on for our preview, predictions and live streaming information.
How to watch Murray vs Zverev live
Western & Southern Open matches including Andy Murray vs Alexander Zverev are streamed live alongside odds and in-play betting at bet365.
Murray vs Zverev: Head-to-head
Murray and Zverev have played just once before, at the Australian Open in January 2017 when Murray won 6-1, 6-2, 6-3. Zverev was ranked world no. 83 at the time.
Murray vs Zverev: Preview
Playing his first official match since the Davis Cup Finals last November, when a groin injury forced him on to the sidelines and kept him there through the Australian Open and the first two months of the tennis season before it all went crazy, Murray was hardly in vintage form against Frances Tiafoe on Saturday but he got the win.
Tiafoe had a break point in the first set, led 5-2 in the first-set tie-break and had a set point, only for Murray to somehow wriggle off the hook and take the lead 7-6(6). With that first set in his pocket, he was able to bounce back from losing the second set 3-6 to dominate the third 6-1, leading Tiafoe to comment on Instagram: ‘Had you by the balls bro but legends prevail.’
Dogged defense and the Murray trademark of somehow squeaking out points it felt he had no right to win by virtue of refusing to miss or let a ball get past him got the British player the win over Tiafoe, who too often lacks the killer instinct to close out his foes. Theoretically, things should be much tougher for Murray against world no. 7 Zverev.
The German will be playing his first official match – he played some exhibitions during the shutdown, as you may have heard – since losing to Tommy Paul in the round of 16 in Acapulco back in February. During the hiatus, he has picked up a new coach in David Ferrer, although the Spanish pro is not with him in New York.
Zverev had the best result of his career at Grand Slam level when he made the semifinals of the Australian Open in January, brushing off a double-fault-riddled and troubled 2019 season, and it was largely because of how well he served. This will be key against Murray. Zverev will want to avoid getting into a long, grinding baseline battle with Murray, and to do that he will need to serve well. I don’t believe Zverev will be able to keep up good serving throughout the match, so I can see him winning in three.