Carlos Alcaraz beats Novak Djokovic after a discouraging match and goes to the final of the Masters 1000 in Madrid

After a big win, it looks like the next game will be even harder. Although he is no longer a stranger on the circuit, not even a hope (next Monday he will be number 6 in the world), Carlos Alcaraz had never had to face the day after a victory against a player like Rafael Nadal, who is besides his lifelong idol.

Of course, the Spaniard has already won the Top 10. Matteo Berrettini and especially Stefanos Tsitsipas can testify that the 19-year-old has no complex at the top of the world rankings. But no one had yet had the size of Christmas (21 Grand Slam titles, let’s remember) on their hunting list. It is enough to have a little hangover for the famous back game.

Especially because the next game was against Novak Djokovic. And although he is slowly returning to his best level after being deprived of competition due to his non-vaccination, the Serb remains a hellish client. However, he was the culprit of a very bad first game (two big fouls and a double foul) to almost offer the break to his rival. Ideal for throwing an Alcaraz that we felt a little less serene than in his last games. It split 3-1 and we started dreaming about seeing how the feat came to fruition, that is, beating Nadal and Djokovic in the same clay court tournament. But beware, we are still talking about the number 1 in the world.

1

Carlos Alcaraz became the first to beat Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic in the same clay court tournament. And at only 19 years old! The fact that Nadal and Djokovic are in different stages of their return to the competition should not in any way minimize the feat that this represents in today’s tennis.

This first forgotten match, the Serb began to put pressure on his rival. If Alcaraz endured playing his usual game and trying his best to take initiatives, he could not return the service of Djokovic who no longer knew any fear in this sector (4 whites in his service, 91% of his points). first ball). In a thread, Alcaraz gave up his service and Djokovic returned to 4-4. He took control of the rallies, maneuvering his opponent and forcing him to strike too hard. The youngest held on until the tie-break, but Djokovic was superior and took the first set.

Alcaraz refuses to submit

Alcaraz then showed that his mind is at least as powerful as his right arm. Although Djokovic did not go down in level, the Spaniard faced him in the first episode of a duel that we hope to see for a few more years as the level was stratospheric. The torsion to his right ankle the night before was just a memory and Alcaraz walked as if nothing had happened.

Although Djokovic showed him the track, he was the one who always took the initiative and showed a monumental strength in refusing to suffer the important moments. And the child prodigy to make the only break of this second set, with in particular a magnificent new cushioning, to return to a round everywhere. The audience was able to show their joy, the show was total.

51

Alcaraz won 51 in this match. A logically high figure in a 3:38 match. But above all, it is more than double that of Novak Djokovic (24).

And it continued in a third set where Alcaraz still faced the world number one and even got three breaks to lead 3-1. But Djokovic tightened the game and held on (2-2). On the ropes, Djokovic saved two new break points to pick up the 3-3. The Serb, forced to show his best tennis, could not fire the impetuous Alcaraz, much calmer than at the beginning of the game. He was also the first to win the match.

Nervous to steel, Djokovic saved her with an ace. The two men did not give up and therefore everything would be played in a final tiebreaker. And this time, Alcaraz did not lose his start. In front of the scoreboard, he visibly put Djokovic under pressure, forcing him to take unlikely shots. But the feat was good for Alcaraz who offered the world number 1 in his third game. The audience on the court of Manolo Santana has rejoiced, aware that he has seen written before his eyes a chapter in the history of tennis.

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