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Olympic champions Zverev, Bencic reach US Open quarterfinals

AP/New York
Filed on September 7, 2021 | Last updated on September 7, 2021 at 12.48 am
Alexander Zverev of Germany plays a return against Jannik Sinner of Italy. (AFP)

British teenager Emma Raducanu continued her dream run by overwhelming American Shelby Rogers 6-2 6-1


Alexander Zverev and Belinda Bencic want a trophy in their hands to go with the gold medals they had around their necks.

The Tokyo Olympics tennis champions both moved into the quarterfinals of the US Open on Monday, getting a step closer to their first Grand Slam titles.

Zverev beat Jannik Sinner 6-4, 6-4, 7-6 (7) for his 15th straight victory. The No. 4 seed from Germany started that run in Japan, carried it through a title in Cincinnati and then kept right on going at the US Open, where he was the runner-up to Dominic Thiem last year.

Zverev said his gold medal is with him in New York. The 24-year-old, who has been accused by a former girlfriend of domestic abuse, joked in his on-court interview that he cuddles with the medal when he’s in bed because he doesn’t have a girlfriend.

He said keeping the medal with him is a way to remind himself of his success over the last month. He pointed to the confidence he’s gained from it as a reason he pulled out a couple of close games late in the second set, then came from behind to take the tiebreaker.

“I think that’s maybe the last few months for me, right there,” he said.

Bencic also had her best result in a major at the US Open, reaching the semifinals in 2019 in her last appearance. The 24-year-old from Switzerland is a victory away from getting back there after beating 2020 French Open champion Iga Swiatek 7-6 (12), 6-3.

The 11th-seeded Bencic pulled out the lengthy first-set tiebreaker, then took the second set in 43 minutes — only about 20 more than the tiebreaker lasted.

“The set was so even, so I think in the tiebreak it’s always a little bit about luck,” Bencic said.

British teenager Emma Raducanu continued her dream run by overwhelming American Shelby Rogers 6-2 6-1 to reach her first Grand Slam quarterfinal.

Going through qualifying to get to the last eight at a major is a stunning accomplishment by itself, but the 18-year-old has done it without dropping a set.

Raducanu, who burst onto the scene this year by reaching the fourth round at Wimbledon in her first Grand Slam appearance, has gone one better at the US Open in dominant fashion.





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