Zverev stays on course for Cologne double after three-set win over Millman

Alexander Zverev returns the ball to Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime during the men‘s final of the ‘Bett1Hulks Indoors’ tennis tournament at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne, western Germany, October 18, 2020. — AFP pic
Alexander Zverev returns the ball to Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime during the men‘s final of the ‘Bett1Hulks Indoors’ tennis tournament at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne, western Germany, October 18, 2020. — AFP pic

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BERLIN, Oct 22 — Fresh from winning the ATP tournament in Cologne last weekend, Germany’s Alexander Zverev reached the quarter-finals of the second week on the Rhine with a tough, three-set triumph over John Millman of Australia on Wednesday.

Zverev, 23, ranked seventh in the world, needed nearly two hours to post a 6-0, 3-6, 6-3 victory over the 31-year-old Millman.

“In the first set I thought I played flawlessly, but then I wasn’t focused at the beginning of the second,” Zverev admitted.

“John is someone who has beaten top players before, I thought I did a poor job serving, but got the win somehow.”

The German top seed will meet France’s Adrian Mannarino in Friday’s quarter-finals.

On Thursday, Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka, who saw off Britain’s Kyle Edmund on Tuesday, will play Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff for a last-eight place.

Seventh-seed Struff beat Italy’s Marco Cecchinato 6-3, 6-1 in the first round.

Cologne’s Lanxess Arena is hosting back-to-back ATP events.

Zverev defeated Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime last weekend in the final of the first event.

The 20-year-old Canadian, whose defeat to Zverev was his sixth straight defeat in an ATP final, recovered from losing the first set to seal a 4-6, 7-6 (7/2), 7-6 (7/4) second-round win over Egor Gerasimov of Belarus late Wednesday. — AFP

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