Germany's Alexander Zverev in action against France's Arthur Fils during...

Germany's Alexander Zverev in action against France's Arthur Fils during their quarter-finals ATP Tennis match in Halle, Germany, Friday June 21, 2024. Credit: AP/Friso Gentsch

HALLE, Germany — Alexander Zverev was hoping for shorter matches on grass. Think again.

The No. 4-ranked Zverev had to battle back to beat 20-year-old Arthur Fils 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-4 in 2 1/2 hours on Friday for a spot in the semifinals of the Halle Open.

Zverev, still in search of his first grass-court title, wanted to make quick work of opponents after some marathon sessions at the French Open, where he lost in five sets to Carlos Alcaraz in the final.

“After the French Open, I was hoping on grass I would play a bit quicker and not play for two-and-a-half, three hours every single match, but I'm continuing what I always do,” Zverev joked.

The second-seeded Zverev needed three sets to get past qualifier Oscar Otte in the first round then eliminated Lorenzo Sonego in straight sets.

Zverev, a two-time runner-up in Halle, next faces Hubert Hurkacz, who beat Marcos Giron 7-6 (5), 6-4.

New world No. 1 Jannik Sinner was taken the distance for a third straight match when he overcame Jan-Lennard Struff 6-2, 6-7 (1), 7-6 (3).

France's Arthur Fils plays a forehand against Germany's Alexander Zverev...

France's Arthur Fils plays a forehand against Germany's Alexander Zverev during their quarter-finals ATP Tennis match in Halle, Germany, Friday June 21, 2024. Credit: AP/Friso Gentsch

Struff hit 18 aces and saved 16 of 18 break points but lost to Sinner for the third time this year.

Sinner, who has yet to play a seed, will face Zhang Zhizhen, who beat Christopher Eubanks of the U.S. 6-4, 4-6, 7-5.

Zhang has become the first Chinese man to reach a tour-level semifinal on grass in the Open era.

More tennis

YOU'VE BEEN SELECTED

FOR OUR BEST OFFER ONLY 25¢ for 5 months

Unlimited Digital Access.

cancel anytime.