Alexander Zverev has set his sights on reaching the top two in the ATP rankings and winning a maiden Grand Slam title in the 2022 season. The German has also criticized the length of the tennis season, saying “the body needs two months to regenerate.”
Zverev climbed to a career-high ranking of World No. 3 earlier this week, following his semifinal run at the Rolex Paris Masters. The Olympic champion is set to make his fifth appearance at the ATP Finals – which is being staged in Turin for the first time.
Zverev has been drawn in the Red Group alongside Daniil Medvedev, Matteo Berrettini and Hubert Hurkacz for the 2021 year-ending showpiece. The 24-year-old – who won the event in 2018 – will face Berrettini in the tournament’s second singles match on Sunday.
In a conversation with BamS, as reported by Bild, Alexander Zverev spoke of being fatigued ahead of the ATP Finals as he approaches the end of the season.
“Yes, I’m mentally tired, but I know it’s the last tournament and a highlight,” Zverev said. “You want to show your best tennis that motivates you. I’m doing great again.”
The German then turned his attention to his goals for next year, targeting an improvement on his current ranking as well as Grand Slam glory. Zverev fell in five sets in the semifinals at both the French Open and the US Open this year – losing to Stefanos Tsitsipas and Novak Djokovic respectively.
“Next year I want to move a little further [than World No. 3],” Zverev continued. “Titles and tournaments are more important, of course. But that goes hand in hand. You cannot become No. 1 with just one Grand Slam title. But I’m turning 25 [in April], so a Major title would certainly not come too early.”
“For a Grand Slam, three weeks is not enough to get in top shape” – Alexander Zverev
During the interview, Alexander Zverev also raised the issue of the lengthy tennis calendar, which runs from January to November. The German focused particularly on the heavy workload for the players since this year’s US Open in September.
“Everyday life is very tedious: training, warming up, these little things,” Zverev added. “No other sport has a longer season than tennis. After the US Open, another Masters (Indian Wells), a 500 tournament (Vienna) and the World Cup (Davis Cup), then we’ll be finished at the end of [November].”
Zverev stressed that more time is needed to recover after a season than is currently available. He also asserted that the current schedule means the preparation time for the Australian Open – which will start in mid January – is shorter than required.
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“The body needs two months to regenerate [after the season],” Zverev said. “I’ll start training again at the beginning of December. For a Grand Slam, three weeks [is] not enough to get in top shape.”