Alexander Zverev showed no signs of fatigue on Thursday in a business-like performance to reach the Mutua Madrid Open quarter-finals for the second consecutive year. Second seed Zverev out-hit and overpowered Leonardo Mayer of Argentina 6-4, 6-1 in 70 minutes.
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The German, who has now won nine of his past 10 matches, arrived in the Spanish capital on the back of lifting his seventh ATP World Tour title at the BMW Open by FWU (d. Kohlschreiber). He completed his opening win at the Caja Magica against Russian qualifier Evgeny Donskoy at 12:15 a.m. local time on Thursday.
Zverev set up a Friday encounter against seventh-seeded American John Isner, who hit 32 aces to beat Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay 6-7(9), 7-6(3), 7-6(4) in two hours and 21 minutes. All five of Isner’s sets in Madrid, including those in his second-round match against compatriot Ryan Harrison, have ended in tie-breaks.
Zverev leads Isner 3-1 in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series, but lost their last match in the 2018 Miami Open presented by Itau final, which was Isner’s maiden ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title.
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Against Mayer, Zverev ran through the opening set, breaking serve at 2-3, but after netting a backhand at 5-4, 30/30, regained control with an ace. He later won the first 11 points of the second set and broke for a 4-1 lead when Mayer struck a backhand long. Zverev finished with a forehand winner – his 19th overall – to close out a hold to love.