Grand Slam Tournament: Zverev Fit for Australian Open - Kerber Confident

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Melbourne (AP) - Alexander Zverev has put away the fright before the Australian Open well and sees no problems for his opening match at the first tennis highlight of the year. "The foot hurts a bit. It's like a bruise on the bone, "Zverev said in Melbourne.

There he had fallen over two days earlier in training and had a swelling of it. "This will need time. I'm not so worried about that, "added the unofficial world champion calmly. For the first round match against the Slovenian Aljaz Bedene Zverev will compete on Tuesday with a taping association. The thigh, which is still aching at the beginning of the week, no longer worries the World Ranking Fourth. On Saturday Zverev trained for two hours with the Spaniard Fernando Verdasco, after he had previously lodged a planned after his words training break.

Regardless of his fitness, the 21-year-old Hamburger emphasized that he does not see himself as a favorite for the first Grand Slam tournament in the new year. Zverev named the Swiss defending champion Roger Federer, the Serbian world ranking first Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal. The Spaniard, who has been suffering injury due to injuries since the US Open, feels well recovered from ankle surgery and recent thigh problems.

Zverev, like Angelique Kerber, does not want to set high expectations for himself. Both had started the new year together at the Hopman Cup in Perth and missed the victory in the unofficial mixed World Cup just gossamer. In Melbourne, both declared their interest to compete in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo as a German couple in mixed.

Three years after their Australian Open triumph, Kerber also sees himself well prepared before she will contest the third match of the day against Slovenian Polona Hercog on Monday in the Rod-Laver-Arena. "I feel pretty good so far. Of course, I think it's a shame that I could not defend Sydney now, "said Kerber, two days after the quarter-finals at the dress rehearsal in the Olympic city of 2000, where she was last year's tournament winner.

It was her first defeat in the new year that she had started with four individual wins at the Hopman Cup. "I had good matches in Perth, also in Sydney, and now I know where I stand. It was very important for me that I had these matches, against good players, had won close matches, »said the 30-year-old.

The world ranking second is happy to have the sense of competition again. She worked on small details with her new coach Rainer Schüttler. "Talking to him is something else because he's played himself," Kerber said of the 2003 Australian Open finalist. 42-year-old North Hesse knew what it's like to be on the pitch and express emotions.

Besides Kerber, five more of the 13 qualified German pros compete on the first day of the tournament. Right at the start of the tournament (01.00 CET), Julia Görges meets American Danielle Collins. In addition, Andrea Petkovic plays against the Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu. In the men's competition, Jan-Lennard Struff meets Australian Matthew Ebden, while Peter Gojowczyk is outsider to Russian Karen Khachanov and qualifier Rudi Molleker to Argentinian Diego Schwartzman.

Tableaus Australian Open

Schedule for Monday

REF: https://www.zeit.de/news/2019-01/12/zverev-fit-fuer-australian-open-kerber-zuversichtlich-190112-99-531621

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