Tsonga overpowers Zverev in Stuttgart

June 12, 2019

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STUTTGART: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France serves to Germany’s Mischa Zverev during their first-round match at the Stuttgart Open.—AFP
STUTTGART: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France serves to Germany’s Mischa Zverev during their first-round match at the Stuttgart Open.—AFP

STUTTGART: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga powered past 2017 semi-finalist Mischa Zverev 6-3, 6-0 before rain brought an early end to play here at the Stuttgart Open on Monday.

Tsonga struck 13 aces as he wrapped up his debut at the grass-court tournament in under an hour to set up a second-round meeting with the sixth-seeded Milos Raonic or Australian qualifier Alexei Popyrin.

Raonic, who lost last year’s final to Roger Federer, is one of three seeded Canadians, alongside Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov. Raonic is making his comeback after missing the clay-court season with a right knee injury.

Shapovalov was due to play Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff but their match was put back to Tuesday due to the rain.

Earlier, Miomir Kecmanovic rallied to beat German veteran Philipp Kohlschreiber 4-6, 7-5, 6-3. The 19-year-old Serb will next play Shapovalov or Struff.

The Stuttgart Open made the switch from clay to grass in 2015.

Published in Dawn, June 12th, 2019