Alcaraz edges out Sinner and Zverev beats Ruud to set up Roland Garros final


Carlos Alcaraz participated in his inaugural ATP challenger tournament in April 2019 when he was only fifteen years old. His outstanding potential was yet to be fully realized. In the opening round, Alcaraz, who was an unranked wildcard, had to face off against Jannik Sinner, a 17-year-old who held the 319th rank at that time. The two young guns had a grueling match that lasted for three sets, but Alcaraz was able to secure his debut challenger triumph.

When they first met at Alcaraz's academy in Villena, Spain, there were only a few people watching. This meeting would become the beginning of a possible defining rivalry for the next generation. They were both grand slam champions who competed against each other at a major tournament for the first time. Despite a cold start and a tense atmosphere, Alcaraz was able to come back from being down a set and a break to win the match against Sinner, the second seed, with a score of 2-6, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3. This win also put him in his first Roland Garros final.

According to Alcaraz, who has been seeded third in Paris, some of the most challenging matches he has ever played in his brief career were against Jannik. He states that the US Open in 2022 was a grueling match. Alcaraz attributes Jannik's greatness to his impressive team and the hard work he puts in every day. Alcaraz wishes to have the opportunity to compete against Jannik in the future. The match against Jannik was one of the most difficult matches Alcaraz has played undoubtedly.

This marks the most youthful semi-final match at a grand slam tournament since Andy Murray defeated Rafael Nadal at the 2008 US Open. After his latest win, Alcaraz has now become the youngest man to have made it to a grand slam final on all three surfaces. At the ripe age of 21, he is also the second youngest player to have reached a final in the 21st century, with Nadal being the sole player to have done so at an even younger age on three different occasions. This Sunday, he will compete for his third major title.

Alcaraz is set to compete against Alexander Zverev, the fourth-seeded player, in the last round of the tournament. Zverev triumphed over Casper Ruud with a score of 2-6, 6-2, 6-4, 6-2, securing his first appearance in the Roland Garros final. This marked Zverev's fourth time reaching the semi-finals, with three consecutive appearances. Despite a strong start, Ruud's performance was affected by his discomfort during the match, displaying symptoms of a stomach ache and receiving pills from his trainer.

Zverev made it to the French Open final for the first time on the same day that he settled an assault case involving his ex-girlfriend, Brenda Patea, that started last week in Berlin. During the court proceedings, it was revealed that Zverev supposedly assaulted Patea by pushing and choking her during an argument in Berlin in 2020. Despite being accused of the accusations, Zverev has maintained his innocence throughout.

Following the game, Zverev responded to his settlement with relief. He emphasized that he had been aware of the outcome all along and had made it known to everyone. He expressed his contentment with the resolution and had nothing further to add, stating that it was a four-year-long ordeal.

On Friday, Alcaraz was initially struggling in the tennis match with a score of 2-6, 0-2. Sinner was playing well with consistent hits, controlled aggression, and impressive defense which frustrated Alcaraz and caused many unforced errors. However, he was able to turn the situation around by using the tactics that led to his win over Sinner at Indian Wells. Alcaraz began to add more height and spin to his hits, changed the pace and trajectory of his shots, and prevented Sinner from finding his rhythm. Eventually, Alcaraz was able to tie the score at one set all, and this time it was Sinner who was struggling to keep up.

The two competitors were obviously having difficulty with their nerves. Similar to Alcaraz's loss to Djokovic in last year's semi-finals, both players began to experience cramps. Sinner was given medical attention for his right hand and legs during breaks in play. Since they had to make their points quicker due to the situation, Sinner was compelled to take more risks. Just when it appeared that Alcaraz was in charge of the game, Sinner made the momentous break and seized the lead with two sets to one.

It wasn't until the fourth round that the level of play and energy increased. Every time a player successfully held their serve, they seemed to gain more confidence to hit the ball with greater ease. They covered every corner of the court. When Sinner was serving at 5-4, Alcaraz made a quick move and secured the game with a spectacular cross-court backhand winner.

Alcaraz had a strong start to the fifth set and was able to break his opponent, Sinner. Despite Sinner's continuous pressure, Alcaraz kept his composure and finished strong in a tense final game to move on.

In order to succeed in this sport, you need to find pleasure in facing challenges and discomfort,” he explained. “Especially in clay court, where matches can be very long and demanding, lasting up to four hours and five sets. However, I always advise my team to learn to enjoy the process of suffering, because it is necessary for achieving our goals.”

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