Former Rome Masters winner Alexander Zverev returns to the Foro Italico in injury fightback mode after taking a heavy loss last week to Carlos Alcaraz.
The German who won the Foro Italico title in 2017 and lost the final a year later, is defending semi-fin points at this edition.
But after last spring’s Roland Garros ankle injury which kept him away for the rest of season, the No. 22 is low on confidence in his game.
Zverev admitted: “”Madrid (fourth round) wasn’t great, really. Alcaraz is one of the best players in the world right now, there’s no doubt about it
“I played badly, I didn’t show a good level.”
The two-time French Open semi finalist is struggling to lift his game to battle at the top level.
“I need to face these (top) players, but unfortunately my this level is not what I was used to showing on clay in recent years.
“But this is a new week, a new opportunity. I hope to do better, because Madrid was not easy at all.
“I’m trying to get back in shape. It’s not fun for me – I want to compete against the best and to win tournaments.
“I just hope to return to my best version.”