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Zverev ends Djokovic’s Golden Slam hopes with comeback win at Olympics

/ 06:12 PM July 30, 2021
Alexander Zverev of Germany with Novak Djokovic of Serbia after winning his semifinal match

Alexander Zverev of Germany with Novak Djokovic of Serbia after winning his semifinal match in the Tokyo Olympics tennis. REUTERS/Mike Segar

Novak Djokovic’s bid for a calendar Golden Grand Slam was dramatically ended by Alexander Zverev in the Olympics men’s singles semifinals on Friday.

The world number one collapsed from a set and a break ahead as German fourth seed Zverev won 1-6, 6-3, 6-1 to set up a Sunday final against Russian Karen Khachanov.

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The 34-year-old Djokovic has never won the Olympic singles title.

The Serbian star had already captured the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon trophies this year and needed Olympic gold and the US Open crown to emulate Steffi Graf, who achieved the feat in 1988, by winning the Golden Slam.

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Germany's Alexander Zverev celebrates beating Serbia's Novak Djokovic during their Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games men's singles semifinal tennis match at the Ariake Tennis Park in Tokyo on July 30, 2021.

Germany’s Alexander Zverev celebrates beating Serbia’s Novak Djokovic during their Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games men’s singles semifinal tennis match at the Ariake Tennis Park in Tokyo on July 30, 2021. (Photo by Tiziana FABI / AFP)

But his attempt to make history came to a close as Zverev powered 30 winners past the usually impregnable Djokovic in a stunning display.

It was yet more heartbreak for the 20-time Grand Slam champion at the Olympics, where his best result is a bronze medal in 2008.

He lost to eventual winner Andy Murray in the semifinals in London nine years ago, and was in tears after a first-round exit to Juan Martin del Potro at the 2016 Rio Games.

Zverev is looking to become the first German to win singles gold since Graf in Seoul after winning 10 of the last 11 games against Djokovic.

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TAGS: Alexander Zverev, Germany, Novak Djokovic, Serbia, Tokyo Olympics
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