Wimbledon 2021: Fourth seed Alexander Zverev eases past qualifier Tallon Griekspoor

Zverev hit 20 aces, kept his unforced errors low and broke Griekspoor's serve six times before sealing the match with a backhand winner down the line.

Germany's Alexander Zverev celebrates defeating Tallon Griekspoor of the Netherlands in the men's singles first round match on day two of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships on Tuesday.   -  AP

Fourth seed Alexander Zverev served strongly to overpower Dutch qualifier Tallon Griekspoor 6-3 6-4 6-1 on Tuesday and advance to the second round of Wimbledon.

The U.S. Open finalist had lost to qualifiers on his last two visits to the grasscourt Grand Slam but the 124th-ranked Griekspoor, making his Wimbledon main draw debut, did not have the game to challenge the tall German in their first meeting.

"You guys have about 10 more minutes with me and then I've got to leave," the 24-year-old told reporters, before breaking into a laugh.

"I mean, me and all the German boys, we already set up that we are going to watch it all in my room, because I have kind of like a small apartment where everybody can fit, so at 5:00 (local time) the match starts, I've got to be in the hotel because everybody is expecting to be at my place."

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Play was suspended due to rain as the roof was closed on Court One with Zverev up a set and a break but the stoppage had no impact on the 24-year-old who continued to land a high percentage of his first serves in to dominate the match.

"It is great to see everything slowly going back to normal. The moment I walked out onto this court made me very happy, to see all the people here," Zverev, one of the players who could challenge top-ranked Novak Djokovic in the men's draw, said in his on-court interview.

"I felt comfortable on the court. It is great we have a roof on court one now. Wimbledon is such a historic tournament, and they keep on improving, trying to make it better for the players and the public, and that is why everyone loves this tournament."

Zverev hit 20 aces, kept his unforced errors low and broke Griekspoor's serve six times before sealing the match with a backhand winner down the line.

He will play American Tennys Sandgren or Norbert Gombos of Slovakia for a place in the third round.

England-Germany should be a fun game

Memories of England's Euro 1996 semi-final defeat by Germany on penalties, when current coach Gareth Southgate missed from the spot, will still be fresh for some supporters and Zverev did not miss the chance to bring it up.

"I'm expecting a fun match to watch, and hopefully Germany will win. It will be fun if it goes to penalties again," Zverev said with a smile.

 

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