Alexander Zverev defeats Alex de Minaur to win Citi Open

Alexander Zverev defeats Alex de Minaur to win Citi Open

Australian 19-year-old Alex De Minaur saved four match points Saturday and advanced to Sunday's ATP Washington Open final, where he will face third-ranked defending champion Alexander Zverev.

During a change of ends in the first set of his semifinal loss to world No 3 Alexander Zverev at the Citi Open in Washington on Sunday morning (NZT), the 19-year-old up-and-comer was seen in a freaky state of self punishment.

Benoit Paire smashed multiple rackets on Wednesday and was fined NZ$24,470 for an audible obscenity, unsportsmanlike conduct and a lack of giving best effort, while Andy Murray was on Saturday brought to tears after a rain-hammered schedule saw him win his match at 3am local time.

"I'm incredibly proud of myself".

It was the second career ATP final for Australia's Alex de Minaur the 19-year-old from Sydney. EPA
It was the second career ATP final for Australia's Alex de Minaur the 19-year-old from Sydney. EPA

At 21, Zverev was the oldest player in the semifinals along with the 19-year-old Tsitsipas and de Minaur and 20-year-old Rublev.

It's only the second career ATP final for De Minaur, the son of a Spanish mother and Uruguayan father who lost to Russian Daniil Medvedev in January's Sydney final.

Seeking his first title, he can emulate a feat of his mentor and Davis Cup captain Lleyton Hewitt, the 2004 Washington champion, if he wins.

"It would mean a lot. I'm not from here, but I honestly felt like this was my home crowd", De Minaur said.

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The final appearance continues a dramatic rise for de Minaur in 2018.

"But tomorrow's going to be a very tough match against a very high-quality opponent and I'm just going to try and recover and leave it all out there again".

The German is seeking a third title of 2018 after becoming the first player this year to win 40 matches on tour with a 6-2 6-4 semi-final success over Greece's Stefanos Tsitsipas. I tried to buy an apartment in Monaco which hasn't really worked out. I'm not rich enough for that', said Zverev.

In the companion WTA event, two-time Grand Slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russian Federation won 6-2, 6-2 twice to reach the final, first downing Kazakh eighth seed Yulia Putintseva in a match that had been halted by rain then dispatching Germany's Andrea Petkovic. Zverev joked after advancing, "I think I'm the only one that's allowed to buy a drink in the USA, right?"

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