While Kerber did not lose a set at 6: 3, 7: 6 (8: 6) against Anna-Lena Friedsam as did Struff at 6: 2, 6: 2, 7: 5 against Michael Mmoh (USA), Zverev turned at 7 : 5, 6: 7 (8:10), 6: 3, 6: 1 against the 19 year old wildcard player Brandon Nakashima (USA) a small lap of honor. (Schedule and results of the US Open)
On Friday, the remaining German trio will have to prove themselves again at the second Grand Slam tournament of the year. Kerber meets the winner of the US duel between Ann Li and Alison Riske, Zverev meets number 32 French Adrian Mannarino and Struff meets world number one Novak Djokovic (Serbia) or Britain’s Kyle Edmund.
Difficult moments for Zverev
Zverev seemed to be a little taken by surprise by the youthful carelessness of his opponent for two sentences. Fearless and brave, the former college player Nakashima hit the world number seven the balls around the ears, but also had a huge dispersion in his strokes. “Somehow anything can happen here, it is very dangerous,” said Eurosport-Expert Boris Becker.
Zverev was really shaken for two sentences, then he found his rhythm. At the beginning of the third set he quickly had new tennis shoes brought in because the old ones were soaked in sweat, then he took off. Nakashima was at the end of his art, Zverev reflected on his strengths and turned his second match point after 2:55 hours.
“I think my second serve was a bit difficult at the beginning, I didn’t play so well from the baseline, and my backhand wasn’t that great either,” said Zverev: “I still have to do something about it.”
Kerber relieved after victory
Kerber was visibly relieved after her victory against Friedsam under the closed roof of the Louis Armstrong Stadium. “I don’t know how many liters I sweated out today, the conditions were extreme,” said the 32-year-old, who will meet Ann Li or Alison Riske (both USA) in the third round on Friday.
Gradually, after the long break, it “feels normal to be on the pitch again, everything is slowly coming back”.
She was “very satisfied, very happy that I’m in the third round,” said Kerber Eurosport: “I wouldn’t have thought that a few weeks ago.”
A little later Anna-Lena Friedsam was sitting in Intervieraum 2, swaying between disappointment about missed opportunities and pride about one of the best matches of her career. “It was super hard,” she said, “Angie didn’t give me a free point, I had to fight with everyone.”
Kerber scored points in her 50th Grand Slam tournament primarily with routine and experience. Friedsam, who had survived the first round at the US Open for the first time, allowed herself to be pushed back again and again in an often promising position. After 35 minutes, Kerber converted her first set ball to 6: 3.
In the second sentence, a high-class exchange of blows developed in phases, in which Kerber had the better end for himself after 1:40 hours in the tiebreak: “I feel good, but there is still a long way to go and I am walking it step by step. “