Alexander Zverev falls in opener in Indian Wells

Mar 13, 2018, 09:17 IST | AFP

World number five Alexander Zverev slumped to a shock 7-5, 5-7, 6-4 defeat

Alexander Zverev of Germany returns a backhand to Joao Sousa of Portugal during the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells. Pic/AFP
Alexander Zverev of Germany returns a backhand to Joao Sousa of Portugal during the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells. Pic/AFP

World number five Alexander Zverev slumped to a shock 7-5, 5-7, 6-4 defeat to unheralded Joao Sousa in his opening match at the ATP Indian Wells Masters on Sunday night. Portugal's Sousa, who is ranked 85th in the world, advances to the third round where he will face Canadian No. 1 Milos Raonic who beat 17-year-old countryman Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-4, 6-4.

The 20-year-old Zverev had a breakthrough year in 2017, winning five titles including Montpellier, Munich, Washington, Rome and Montreal. The German was hoping to continue that surge at Indian Wells, but couldn't get past Sousa despite blasting 14 aces in the two hour, 23 minute marathon.

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