Photo: Paul ZimmerAlexander Zverev (GER) and Belinda Bencic (SUI) at the ITF World Champions' Dinner
PARIS, FRANCE: Belinda Bencic and Alexander Zverev were honoured along with other ITF World Champions during a ceremony at the Pavillon D'Armenonville in Paris last night.
The pair were presented with their trophies by ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti alongside the other Champions.
Belinda Bencic is only the third Swiss player, after Roger Federer and Martina Hingis, to be named ITF World Champion in any category after securing the year-end No. 1 girls ranking. In 2013 Bencic won 39 straight matches and two Grand Slam titles, at Roland Garros and Wimbledon. She was also a quarterfinalist at the US Open and ended the year with six titles and an overall 42-2 singles win loss record. Bencic has already broken into the top 100 WTA just a couple of months after her 17th birthday.
Alexander Zverev is also only the third player from his country, after Boris Becker and Steffi Graf, to be named ITF World Champion after becoming the youngest year-end boys’ No. 1 since 2005. The 16-year-old was the most consistent performer on the ITF Junior Circuit, winning two singles titles and reaching three other finals including Roland Garros. Zverev showed that he has the personality to be a great character if his results make him a future star of the game. Asked by the dinner’s compere Andrew Castle, age 50, where he expected his ranking to be in five years, the assured German said, ‘Well I want to be as high as possible, I certainly want to be higher than you!’