Alexander Zverev of Germany on his way to defeat against Fernando Verdasco of Spain at Roland Garros.
Alexander Zverev of Germany on his way to defeat against Fernando Verdasco of Spain at Roland Garros. YOAN VALAT

Verdasco upsets rising star Zverev at French Open

SPANISH veteran Fernando Verdasco has caused a massive French Open shock, upending German prodigy and ninth seed Alexander Zverev.

On a huge wave of confidence after winning the Rome Masters, Zverev was given a jolting reality check with a 6-4 3-6 6-4 6-2 first-round whipping.

The teenager departed the tournament along with American 27th seed Sam Querrey, who was eclipsed by South Korea's Hyeon Chung 6-4 3-6 6-3 6-3.

Swiss star Stan Wawrinka continued his excellent form with a 6-2 7-6 (8-6) 6-3 triumph over Slovak Jozel Kovalik.

US Open winner Juan Martin del Potro also progressed with a 6-2 6-1 6-4 margin over fellow Argentine Guido Pella.

A dual grand slam semi-finalist Verdasco is something of a grand slam under-achiever, given his swashbuckling style and class.

But he was far too steady for an erratic Zverev.

Meanwhile, Britain's Andy Murray avoided the fate of fellow world number one Angelique Kerber by coming through his first-round match at the French Open in four sets.

The 30-year-old beat Russia's Andrey Kuznetsov 6-4 4-6 6-2 6-0.

Defeat for Murray would have seen both top seeds exit a Grand Slam in round one for the first time in the open era.

Murray goes on to face Slovakia's Martin Klizan.


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