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Alexander Zverev entered the tournament as the top seed

Photo: Rodrigo Oropeza / AFP

Tennis professional Alexander Zverev was eliminated in the first round at the ATP tournament in Acapulco, Mexico, with his first defeat against a German competitor since 2019.

The Olympic champion lost his opening match late on Tuesday evening against his Davis Cup teammate Daniel Altmaier 3:6, 6:3, 3:6.

Zverev entered the tournament as the top seed and therefore the favorite for the title.

“I think winning against a German is something special,” said Altmaier.

“He is number one in our country and has achieved a lot for our country.” He hopes that they can also achieve success together for Germany in the future.

For Zverev it was the first defeat against a German tennis professional since he lost to Dustin Brown in Stuttgart almost five years ago.

After almost two and a half hours the game was decided in favor of the strong Altmaier.

Zverev went to the net for a quick handshake with his eyes on the ground.

“The experience of having been in situations like this helped,” said Altmaier about the decisive phases in the third set after he had perfected his fourth win against a top ten player.

Triumph 2021, bad memories of 2022

Zverev now has another bad memory of the $2.2 million hard court tournament in Acapulco.

In 2021 he triumphed here thanks to a final victory against the Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas.

A year later, however, he was disqualified for freaking out during a doubles match in which he smashed his racket on the referee's chair.

The result was a fine and an eight-week suspended sentence.

Zverev was recently eliminated in the semi-finals of the smaller ATP tournament in Los Cabos, Mexico.

At the beginning of February he canceled his participation in the Davis Cup qualifying round in Hungary due to a viral infection.

The world number six had already become ill in Melbourne on his way to the semi-finals of the Australian Open and lost there against the Russian Daniil Medvedev.

Altmaier will now face Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic in the round of 16.

Dominik Koepfer from the Black Forest also advanced to the next round thanks to a 6:4, 4:6, 6:0 win against French qualifier Terence Atmane.

The Davis Cup player will face number eight seed Frances Tiafoe from the USA in the round of 16.