FILE–Alexander Zverev of Germany returns a shot to Taylor Fritz during the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden on October 15, 2021 in Indian Wells, California. Matthew Stockman/Getty Images/AFP
Olympic champion Alexander Zverev admitted he blew the chance to win the Indian Wells tournament after Friday’s shock quarterfinal defeat by American Taylor Fritz and said he just wants to return home.
Zverev, who was aiming to win his third ATP Masters 1000 title of the season, lost 4-6 6-3 7-6(3) after Fritz fought back from 2-5 down in the final set and saved two match points to stun the German in the California desert.
Fritz will face Nikoloz Basilashvili in the semifinals after the Georgian knocked out second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4 2-6 6-4 earlier on Friday.
“Today was just not really my day, to be honest. I was close to winning, but the level of tennis was just not quite there for me,” world number four Zverev told reporters.
“Today mentally is not easy for me. My next tournament is (in) Vienna. Hoping I can deal with it well there, but right now I just want to go home.
“It was a very long season. I have played well. But this one hurts because I knew that after Stefanos lost this morning, I was kind of the favourite to win this tournament, but my tennis wasn’t there yet.”
Zverev entered the match well drilled and in strong form after winning 20 of his last 21 matches on hard courts.
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