German youngster Alexander Zverev will begin his French Open campaign when he takes on John Millman in the first round on Tuesday.
Zverev is yet to taste Grand Slam success, something which he will be rooting for in Paris. He is the No.5 seed, and the German carries expectations of many in this tournament. His form on clay has not been great this year. Zverev took part in the Madrid Open but bowed out in the quarter-finals at the hands of Stefanos Tsitsipas. In the Italian Open, he lost in the Round of 32 to unseeded Matteo Berrettini in straight sets.
Since then he has won a title, at the Geneva Open last week. He defeated Nicolas Jarry in the final there. The win must have boosted his confidence as he prepares for the French Open. His best finish in Paris was last year when he reached the quarter-finals. Dominic Thiem defeated him last year at Roland-Garros. That run was the best which Zverev has managed in a Grand Slam tournament. He has failed to go past the quarter-final stage yet at any Grand Slam.
Despite his huge prize money in other events, Zverev is still mastering the art of five-set matches. He went out of the Australian Open in January in the fourth round. He will want to go further than that, and his seeding certainly merits those expectations. Still just 22, Zverev has a lot of time to start racking up Grand Slam titles. But he needs to start somewhere, and the next fortnight is a time as good as any.
He will come up against John Millman, who can be a tricky opponent. The veteran Australian is relishing the challenge of another French Open. He also took part in the Italian Open but crashed out in the first round there. In the Lyon Open, he could manage to reach the Round of 16. His records at Roland-Garros is not encouraging either.
This will be the fourth time he takes part in the main draw of the French Open. In all the first three times, he went out in the first round. His record at other Grand Slams is more respectable. Millman reached the quarter-finals of the US Open last year. He has reached just one ATP final in his career, which was in the Hungarian Open previous year. Millman lost that final to Marco Cecchinato.
My first thought when I see clay is that it’s going to be physical out there,” he said recently. “It’s a test of your endurance and your mental strength; it’s a fun place. The longer I can extend the match – turn it into a bit of a ding dong battle – the better my chances.”
Alexander Zverev vs John Millman Prediction
Zverev will be the favorite for this game, but Millman won’t make it easy for him. The German should get the win in four sets to progress to the second round. Millman will make it tough, but Zverev will have enough to get the win.