Zverev Fights Through To Hamburg QF

Fognini, Carreno Busta also advance

Alexander Zverev overcame an up-and-down performance on Thursday to reach his eighth quarter-final of 2019 at the Hamburg European Open.

Zverev broke at 5-5 in the second set with aggressive play from the baseline, but the second seed was broken to love while serving for the match at 6-5. Zverev, however, recovered with a consistent tie-break to beat Argentine Federico Delbonis 6-4, 7-6(5).

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I don’t think I played a bad game. I think he played an amazing game, the best game he played of the match. So mostly it was fine,” Zverev said of the 6-5 game in the second set. “The most important thing is that I won the tie-break afterwards quite easily. You will always have games where you lose and games where you get broken, and it’s how you come back from that and I did well today.”

The World No. 5 is playing at his home ATP 500 tournament for the first time since 2016, when he fell in the first round. The 2014 semi-finalist will next meet Filip Krajinovic.

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The Serbian hit 12 aces in a 6-7(6), 7-5, 6-1 win over 2016 champion Martin Klizan, who recovered from 1-4 and 3-5 down to win the first set. Krajinovic won the last six games of the match.

Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta knocked out seventh seed Jan-Lennard Struff 6-1, 7-6(4) in 85 minutes. Struff served for the second set at 5-3. Carreno Busta will next meet third seed Fabio Fognini, who held off #NextGenATP German Rudolf Molleker 7-5, 6-4.

The 18-year-old Molleker beat two-time Hamburg champion Leonardo Mayer to make the second round of the ATP 500 event and had chances against Fognini, the 2017 champion, including a set point at 5-4, 40/30 in the opening set. But Fognini saved that and won the final three games to take the opener.

In the second, Molleker was broken at 4-4 when he double faulted. Fognini won eight of his 10 second-serve return points in the second set.

Fognini has never beaten Carreno Busta in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series (0-6), which includes three clay-court matches.

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