As top tennis player Alexander Zverev battled Rafael Nadal at the French Open earlier this week, he injured his right ankle. Instead of sliding as is typical on the Roland Garros clay court, he took an extra awkward step and rolled his ankle.
Clay is quite a different style of play than grass. Sliding on the clay for lateral motion is time proven technique. The step before the injury on the right side got Zverev off balance and set him up for the injury.
He was helped off in a wheelchair and forced to withdraw from the tournament. But what is his outlook for Wimbledon and the US Open?
By video analysis, Zverev has at least a grade 2 lateral inversion ankle sprain. Undoubtedly, ligaments are torn, but there should be no fracture despite the grotesque look of the injury. No surgery will be needed but considerable rehabilitation will be.
Though the All England Club tournament starts in three and a half weeks, Zverev has a reasonable chance to play. By the conclusion of the tournament in five weeks, he should be nearing 100%. There should be no issue for the US Open in three months.
This is clearly a case where all are glad the injury looked worse than it is.