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Alexander Zverev has this wish two years after RG’s horror injury against Rafael Nadal
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Alexander Zverev has this wish two years after RG’s horror injury against Rafael Nadal

Alexander Zverev admits he still has ‘mixed emotions’ about the end of his 2022 French Open semi-final against Rafael Nadal, but adds that playing the Spaniard again at Roland Garros and doing it in a different way finishing the match might help him mentally calm down what happened. two years ago.

After beating Carlos Alcaraz in the quarter-final of the 2022 French Open, Zverev also played great against Nadal as there was not much difference between the two in their semi-final. Against Nadal, Zverev lost a very tight first set, which the Spaniard won 10-8 in a tiebreak, but he continued to take on the former world number 1 and opened a second set at 6-5. pipe.

The crowd and tennis fans around the world enjoyed watching Nadal and Zverev, but then it all ended in the blink of an eye after the German severely twisted his ankle and immediately started screaming in pain. Zverev, who left the field in tears and in a wheelchair, did not play again in 2022 after tearing several ankle ligaments and requiring surgery.

It’s been exactly two years since Zverev had his most traumatic tennis experience and he hasn’t played against Nadal since. But with Nadal likely to face his last French Open, 27-year-old Zverev would like to get another shot at the record 14-time French Open champion in Paris.

“I obviously have mixed feelings and mixed emotions about that match, about the fact that I played it there simply because it was one of the best tennis matches I’ve ever played in my career, but it was the worst ending I’ve ever had a match.” tennis match in my career,” said Zverev.

“I’d love to do it again, just to have a different ending to those memories, right? That’s just in my head. I’d love to play him again. I’d love to have him in a movie want to play.” Final or semi-final, again in a big match, I think that would be great for both of us. We’ll see how it will be for him.”

Alexander Zverev and Rafael Nadal
Alexander Zverev and Rafael Nadal © Getty Images Sports – Ryan Pierse

Zverev feared his career was over after the injury against Nadal

The moment Zverev rolled his ankle, he started screaming in pain and it was quite clear and obvious to everyone that the German had just suffered a serious injury. The crowd was in absolute shock and disbelief as Nadal rushed to the other side of the court to check on Zverev.

Zverev’s ankle swelled immediately and after receiving medical attention on the pitch, the German was placed in a wheelchair and left the pitch with tears in his eyes.

Later, Zverev himself admitted that one of the first thoughts he had was that he might never play again.

“At first you naturally think that your career is over. You can no longer move your foot, you heard the sound of breaking. There is already a certain fear at that moment,” Zverev said a month after his injury.

“It was just a bitter moment for me. The match against Rafa, I still think it could go either way. Then a final against Caspar Ruud: I think I (could have) done it. A Grand Slam victory, number one in the world, and so on.”

Alexander Zverev
Alexander Zverev © Getty Images Sports – Ryan Pierse

Zverev fully believed in the moment he could beat Nadal

After the first set lasted an hour and 33 minutes, the second set was already at an hour and 34 minutes when Zverev suffered a horror injury. And although Zverev missed four set points in the first set, his level did not drop in the second set and he still made it very difficult for Nadal and ensured that the Spaniard deserved every point.

Reflecting on last year’s match, Zverev said it was the best he had ever felt on clay and that he was confident he could beat Nadal.

“For some reason I did that (I believed I could win). I don’t want to sound arrogant,” Zverev said last April.

“Rafa is clearly the best player to ever play on that surface, so you never know what will happen. You never know what will happen in that match. Of course, if I didn’t get injured, I could have lost that match. Of course, he can go on to win his 14th Grand Slam.

“But I felt like I played the best tennis I’ve ever played on this surface. So for some reason I felt like I could at least compete with him, which I did.

“The outcome of the match obviously always depends on small factors. But I did feel like this could have been the week for me.”

Alexander Zverev
Alexander Zverev © Getty Images Sports – Ryan Pierse

It remains to be seen whether Zverev will fulfill his wish of playing Nadal at this year’s French Open.