Alexander “Sascha” Zverev is one of the new big names in men’s professional tennis and is now a solid top-10 competitor and Grand Slam contender.
This article will take a closer look at the life and career of this German tennis phenom.
|1.98 m (6’6”)||90 kg (198 lbs)||Born April 20th, 1997||Father: Aleksandr Zverev Sr.|
Mother: Irina Zvereva
Brother: Mischa Zverev
Who Is Alexander Zverev?
Alexander Zverev is a relatively new player at the elite level of men’s tennis who only turned professional in 2013. Yet, he has already had considerable success in his career.
He comes from a tennis family; both of his parents are former professional tennis players who represented the Soviet Union. His brother Mischa is almost 10 years older than him and, as of 2021, is still an active professional.
His parents emigrated to Hamburg, Germany, before Alexander was born (in 1991). Hence, unlike his parents, Alexander Zverev represents the nation of Germany in professional tennis.
Although Alexander grew up in Germany, he currently resides in Monte Carlo along with his brother and many other top tennis players. Owing to his Russian background, German upbringing, and international career, Zverev is fluent in three languages: Russian, German, and English.
His Career So Far
Despite turning professional in 2013, Alexander Zverev did not play in his first Grand Slam main draw until Wimbledon 2015. He reached his first major quarter-final at the French Open in 2018, his first semi-final at the 2020 Australian Open, and his first final at the 2020 US Open. In all three matches, he lost to Dominic Thiem.
As of 2021, he has not yet claimed a Grand Slam singles title, though he has 18 career singles titles and two doubles titles.
He has been more impressive at Masters 1000 tournaments, winning 5 so far. He won the Italian and Canadian Open titles at the tender age of 20 in 2017. He has since won three more. His total of 5 makes him the most successful active player at these tournaments, second only to the big 3 of Djokovic, Nadal, and Federer.
Zverev first reached his career-high ranking of 3 in the world in November 2017. Since breaking into the top 10 in July 2017, his ranking has not dropped below 8th in the world.
The 2021 Olympic Champion
The most memorable moment of Alexander Zverev’s career so far is, no doubt, his recent triumph at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. He fought through the tough field and lost only one set on his way to winning Germany’s first-ever Olympic Gold in men’s singles tennis. In the final, he defeated the Russian Karen Khachanov with ease 6-3, 6-1.
Aside from his Olympic Gold Medal, the next best victory for Zverev was winning the ATP World Tour Finals in 2018. This is the most significant title in men’s tennis except for the Grand Slams and Olympic gold. To achieve this, he had to beat both Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.
Alexander Zverev – Player Profile
- 1.98 m (6’6”)
Zverev is known for being a very tall player, standing at 1.98 m or 6’6”. He is the same height as fellow competitor Daniil Medvedev. Medvedev is tied with Juan Martin Del Potro and Marin Cilic as the tallest Grand Slam champion in history. All three are 1.98 m, so if Zverev can win a Grand Slam tournament in the future, he will join this elite trio.
Zverev is part of a new generation of tall male players who have had great success in their early careers. Alexander uses his height to his advantage while playing; he can hit fast serves with his high ball toss. His large wingspan enables him to retrieve more balls than many shorter opponents.
- 90 kg (198 lbs)
Alexander Zverev used to weigh less. His strength and conditioning coach helped him to increase his weight by adding muscle mass. This was intended to make him more solid on the court and allow him to better respond to hard-hitting players. His higher weight has also made his shots more powerful.
Although his weight is above average for a male player, this figure is by no means high for Zverev, considering his towering height. Zverev’s physique is still athletic and slim.
- Born: April 20th, 1997
Alexander is the younger of the two Zverev brothers, but he has had better results than Mischa so far in his career and is expected to go even further.
He still has many years left in his playing career and might not have reached his mental and physical prime yet.
Nevertheless, he has already displayed both maturity and endurance by reaching the latter stages of important tournaments and winning close matches. A notable example is his 5-set semi-final victory to reach the 2020 US Open final.
- Brother: Mikhail “Mischa” Zverev
- Father: Alexander Zverev Sr.
- Mother: Irina Zvereva
Mischa was born in Moscow but moved to Hamburg with his parents at age four. He turned professional in 2005. His best result was reaching the Australian Open quarter-final in 2017 when he defeated Andy Murray. His sole ATP singles title was in Eastbourne in 2018.
His parents were both born in Sochi. Alexander Sr. used to represent the Soviet Union in the Davis Cup and was his country’s highest-ranked player at one stage.
Irina was the Soviet Union’s number four player at her peak. Interestingly, her last final loss was against the mother of Stefanos Tsitsipas, another young successful player who is one of Alexander Zverev’s current strong rivals. Alexander Sr. and Irina moved to Germany in 1991 to work as coaches in Hamburg and have stayed there ever since.
Final Thoughts on Alexander Zverev
Alexander Zverev has not yet secured one of tennis’s most prestigious prizes and has a lot of work to do before he is considered an all-time great. However, his consistency has been very impressive ― reaching the semi-final and beyond four times in Grand Slams from 2020 to 2021.
He already has over 300 professional victories in singles and nearly 20 titles. His powerful game has few weaknesses and is effective on all surfaces. It looks like Zverev is set to stay near the top of the men’s game since his best tennis is surely still to come.
As the new generation of young players starts to take over men’s tennis, Alexander Zverev is someone who will challenge for the big prizes. Based on his results so far, there is little to suggest he cannot be a multiple Grand Slam champion and world number 1 in the future.