Alexander Zverev got off to a winning start in his ATP Finals campaign on Monday by battling back from a set down to beat Carlos Alcaraz 6-7 (3/7), 6-3, 6-4.
Russian Zverev, a two-time winner at the year-ending tournament, put on a powerful display to see off world number two Alcaraz who is not on top form after returning from injury at the end of last month.
Wimbledon champion Alcaraz struggled with lower back and left foot problems which had kept him out of action since the Shanghai Masters in early October.
He was then dumped out early at the Paris Masters by Russian qualifier Roman Safiullin and flagged towards the end of a bruising contest with giant German Zverev, the number seven seed in Turin.
Zverev is tough opposition on hard courts like the one at the Pala Alpitour and made full use of his height and power to see off Alcaraz and take the lead in the Red Group.
Before Zverev’s win Novak Djokovic was presented with the trophy for finishing the season as world number one, a position he secured after winning his thrilling Green Group opener with Holger Rune on Sunday night, a match which lasted more than three hours.
Djokovic is red-hot favourite to claim his seventh Finals title which would put him out of his own as the record winner, one ahead of retired great and old rival Roger Federer.