Alexander Zverev crashes out to Stefanos Tsitsipas in Toronto

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Alexander Zverev described his clash with Stefanos Tsitsipas as “absolutely pathetic” after losing to the Greek teenager in the quarter-finals of the Rogers Cup.

Tsitsipas produced his third upset in as many days, following up his victories over Dominic Thiem and Novak Djokovic by saving two match points on his way to a 3-6 7-6 (13/11) 6-4 win against defending champion Zverev.

The German second seed did not mince his words afterwards, telling reporters in Toronto: “I’m almost honest with you guys, I always say when the opponent played better. Today was an absolutely pathetic match. I don’t even think he played well.”

Tsitsipas was down a set and 5-2 but found inspiration on his forehand to win three games in a row. A tense tie-break followed, with the Greek player holding his nerve to save Zverev’s match points and force a decider on his fifth set point.

The pair exchanged breaks in the third, before Zverev double-faulted on match point in the 10th game to hand Tsitsipas the victory.

Responding to his opponent’s comments, the teenager said: “The level of tennis today, in my opinion, was not the highest. It was all right. People seemed to love it, love the show and everything. I would say I played okay.”

Alexander Zverev shows his frustration during a defeat by Stefanos Tsitsipas he branded
Alexander Zverev shows his frustration during a defeat by Stefanos Tsitsipas he branded “pathetic” (Frank Gunn/AP)

The Wimbledon finalist broke his opponent twice in each set and did not face a break point on his own serve throughout the match.

Meanwhile, world number one Rafael Nadal was forced to fight for his place in the final four, eventually beating Marin Cilic in three sets.

The Croatian dominated the 40-minute opening set but Nadal stepped up his level in the second, breaking twice to force a decider, and needed just a single break in the third to claim a 2-6 6-4 6-4 victory.

Nadal was also able to celebrate becoming the first singles player to qualify for this year’s ATP Finals in London in November.

Next up for Nadal is Russia’s Karen Khachanov, who beat 2017 Montreal semi-finalist Robin Haase 6-3 6-1. Khachanov served strongly against the Dutchman, losing just two first-serve points in his 55-minute win, and winning nine of the final 10 games.

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