French Open: Zverev eases past Djere, advances to last 16
World number six Alexander Zverev claimed a straight-set victory over Serbia's Laslo Djere in the third round of the 2021 French Open. The German has advanced to the last 16, beating the 25-year-old 6-2, 7-5, 6-2. Zverev earned his second straight-set victory in Paris this year after getting tested by Roman Safiullin and Oscar Otte in the first two rounds respectively.
Zverev broke in the very first game, and wrapped up the set in 40 minutes. The Serbian was quick to respond as he held a lead of 3-0 in the following set. He was moments away from taking the set at 5-2, however, Zverev reeled off five consecutive games to win 7-5. The final set remained one-sided as Zverev won comfortably.
In his third-round victory, Zverev struck a total of 31 winners and four aces. He won 49 per cent of the receiving points (52/106). Zverev also won 18 out of 24 net points. On the other hand, Djere committed 45 unforced errors.
Zverev is now 21-8 in the season. Earlier this month, the German won the Madrid Open by beating Matteo Berrettini in the final. En route to his title, he also beat Rafael Nadal 6-4, 6-4 in the quarter-finals. Now, this is the fourth time that he has reached the fourth round at Roland Garros, having played the quarter-finals in 2018 and 2019.
Zverev will now face Japan's Kei Nishikori in the fourth round. The latter proceeded to the last 16 as his Swiss opponent Henri Laaksonen retired with an injury after the opening set. Nishikori earlier won five-set matches against Karen Khachanov and Alessandro Giannessi in the first two rounds respectively. He has now won 10 of his last 11 five-set clashes.