NEW YORK, Aug 29: Alexander Zverev battled into the early hours of Tuesday to defeat a surprisingly troublesome Darian King 7-6(9), 7-5, 6-4 at the US Open.
The fourth seed, wearing a striped headband, pinstripe shirt and knee-high socks, admitted to staying up beyond his bed time following a first-round win over King on Arthur Ashe Stadium. The German will next face Borna Coric of Croatia.
Zverev, who came into his encounter against King with a 1-2 record at the final Grand Slam championship of the year, didn�t have things all his own way as he failed to impose his game, appearing frustrated at times and committed 64 unforced errors. The fourth-seeded German got all he could handle in the first set from the little-known 25-year-old, who made it through qualifiers to become the first player from Barbados to compete in a Grand Slam.
Dressed in knee-high socks and striped headband that recalled a 1970�s-era Bjorn Borg, Zverev looked out of synch early in the match, the booming serve that helped bring him five titles this year lacking its usual punch.
On the other hand, Coric defeated Jiri Vesely 7-6(5), 7-6(2), 6-2 in two hours and 28 minutes, firing nine aces.
The Croatian claimed the lone previous clash against Zverev, having prevailed in a deciding tie-break at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event in Cincinnati in 2015. The winner will face either 28th seed Kevin Anderson or Ernests Gulbis, after the South African raced past qualifier JC Aragone 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 and the former World No. 10 Latvian defeated Alessandro Giannessi 6-4, 6-7(3), 6-2, 7-5.
Also in this quarter of the draw, 34-year-old Gilles Muller and 35-year-old Paolo Lorenzi will square off in a battle of elder statesmen in the second round. Thirteen years removed from their first meeting, Muller leads the FedEx ATP Head2Head by a total of 3-1. Muller rallied past Bernard Tomic 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 and Lorenzi did the same to defeat Joao Sousa 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(4), 6-2. � Agencies