Alexander Zverev yesterday smashed and seethed into the last 16 of the Shanghai Masters with a dragged-out 7-6 (15/13), 7-6 (7/3) win over underdog Jeremy Chardy of France.
An incident-packed match saw Zverev apologize to a television cameraman after the young German accidentally hit a ball square into his jaw in winning a point.
The 22-year-old was also seen by a doctor in the first set and in another colorful moment, Zverev smashed his racket on the floor during the mammoth first-set tiebreak.
Zverev, ranked sixth in the world but suffering a poor season, was pushed all the way by the 71st-ranked Chardy before finally emerging in 1 hour, 48 minutes.
The second-set tiebreak also had a lighter moment -- Zverev losing his grip while hitting a shot, and his racket flying into the crowd.
Zverev has long been talked about as the next big thing in men’s tennis, but only one of his 11 career titles has come this year. He has yet to win a Grand Slam.
The fifth seed next faces Andrey Rublev of Russia.
In other news, Saudi Arabia is to stage its first ever international tennis tournament, a men’s exhibition event, in a “watershed moment for the kingdom,” Prince Abdulaziz Bin Turki Al Faisal Al Saud, chairman of the General Sports Authority of Saudi Arabia, said on Tuesday.
Swiss three-time Grand Slam winner Stanislas Wawrinka and rising star Daniil Medvedev are two big names already signed up to appear in the eight-player Dec. 12 to 14 hardcourt event.
Saudi Arabian rulers are using sports to try and soften their international image and to provide a showcase for reforms inside the oil-rich kingdom, they say.
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