World number three Alexander Zverev won his second consecutive Washington Open title Sunday, defeating Australian teen Alex De Minaur 6-2, 6-4 in the youngest ATP final since 2007.
The 21-year-old German captured his ninth career ATP title, and third of the year after Munich and Madrid, at the US Open hardcourt tuneup event.
Zverev joined a list of back-to-back Washington champions that includes Americans Andre Agassi and Michael Chang and Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro, the most recent prior winner to defend from 2008-09.
It was the second career ATP final for 72nd-ranked De Minaur, a 19-year-old from Sydney who lost his hometown title match to Daniil Medvedev in January.
Not since 20-year-old Rafael Nadal beat 19-year-old Novak Djokovic 11 years ago at Indian Wells had the combined ages of ATP finalists been so young. Not since Harold Solomon beat Guillermo Vilas in 1974 had a Washington final featured two players 21-or-under.
De Minaur, who saved four match points in beating Russian Andrey Rublev in the semi-finals, was trying to become the youngest ATP champion since Zverev at St. Petersburg in 2016.
The Aussie will jump to a career-best 45th in Monday’s rankings.
Zverev is of Russian heritage, his family moving to Hamburg in 1991, six years before Alexander was born, while De Minaur was born to a Spanish mother and Uruguayan father and grew up in Spain as well as Australia.
Zverev, who needed a fifth-set Davis Cup tie-breaker to beat De Minaur in their only prior meeting, broke in the first and third games, each time when the Aussie netted a backhand.
The German took the first set in 30 minutes on his fourth ace, dropping only five points on his serve in the first set and 11 in the match.