Adrian Mannarino, the evening of all regrets. Author of a very good match on the center court of the Rolex Paris Masters, the Frenchman did not go far from the feat against Alexander Zverev, Thursday night, during a long, disputed and undecided round of 16. Beaten in the best of three sets by the 7th in the world (7-6 (11), 6-7 (7), 6-4), the French folded after a huge fight of 3 hours stack. His defeat leaves Ugo Humbert as the last French representative in this 2020 edition of the Paris Masters 1000. Forceps winner, Zverev for a place in the semi-finals on Friday night.
Opposed for the third time this season, Zverev and Mannarino offered a mano a mano worthy of their confrontations at the US Open and Cologne 2. The match was a kind of carbon copy of this duel played in Germany ago. fifteen days (success of Zverev 6-4, 6-7, 6-4). It was even tighter. But to the chagrin of the Ile-de-France, who was coming out of a final at Nur-Sultan, it was again Zverev who found the solution to win. It only took a 4-4 break in the deciding set for the finalist of the last US Open to break the battered armor of his opponent, before buckling in pain.
An unequal and indecisive match
Neither man has ever really gained the upper hand over the other during this sometimes very pleasant, sometimes very poor match, so many ups and downs have they had. If we dissect the scenario of this round of 16, it was still Zverev who had the keys to the truck except that the gas tank was leaking. Author of the first break of this match at 3-3 in the first act, the German lost the thread in the wake by conceding the break, before snatching this initial act after a completely crazy decisive game. A quarter of an hour long, this tie-break was a miniature summary of this match. A match within the match where Zverev and Mannarino played cat and mouse. The Hamburg player finally pocketed it 13-11 on his fifth set point. Mannarino, he missed three.
The loss of this first set did not reach the 61st in the world morale, however. Mannarino made the break from the start of the second set, held the course before starting to lose track. It will not surprise anyone: he suffered the same illness as Zverev in the first set. Deprived of his first ball and uncomfortable with a forehand, the Frenchman let Zverev come back and lose his serve to 4-3. Obviously, the two rivals settled their accounts during the decisive game. Mannarino almost paid dearly for his downturn: he lost his advantage 4-0, before saving a match point at 6-7. He finally took advantage of Zverev’s shaking arm, too feverish behind a second at 7-8, to pick up one inning everywhere. And it is thanks to the offensive option that he achieved his ends.
Like Zverev in the second set, Mannarino did not ride the wave of his decisive game. He even gradually faltered behind his commitment. Forced to save a break point entry, then at 2-2, before being scared at 3-3, the Ile-de-France has never known a moment of respite. Always caught up with a bad choice, or surprised by a kick from Zverev, the Habs had more to grit their teeth than their new best enemy, very comfortable behind their engagement. The break conceded at 4-4 was ultimately the result of a certain logic. But, yes, Mannarino did not go far to afford this devil of “Sascha”. His flat game, without strength, and his little game, once again posed a thousand problems for the German. But it was the cooler of the two that stood out.