June 22, 2017 -- Halle, Germany
In the second round of the Gerry Weber Open today, Roger faced Mischa Zverev -- the tricky, German grass-court specialist. The first set was competitive with both players serving well and holding. Fed played smart and aggressive to take the first set in a tiebreaker. He stepped up his game in the second set and forced the only break of the match landing the Swiss star with a 7-6 (4), 6-4 win. Roger has never lost to Mischa Zverev and now is 4-0 against he German veteran.
The last time the two played in Halle was 2013. That year, Roger earned a double bagel win over the German before going on to win the title. Today was much more competitive as Zverev has just broken into the top 30 on the ATP Tour and is at the height of his career.
“It was totally different. He started serving great, which put me under pressure as I wasn’t getting many looks,” he said. “It was important to stay calm after missing chances to win the set at 5-4. And it’s important to win ‘breakers. They are the sets you need to win to win tournaments. It felt like a close ‘breaker that could have gone either way. After I got that in the bag I was really able to start to relax and really play and feel the way I want to feel out there. That’s the first time I’ve felt like that since Miami, so that’s a good sign looking ahead.”
Next up for Roger is the quarterfinals where he will face Florian Mayer, who upset the sixth seed, Lucas Pouille.