Alcaraz vs Sinner: The Future of Tennis at French Open

Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner will clash in a highly anticipated French Open semi-final, marking the first such meeting between two players under 23 since 2008. With defending champion Novak Djokovic out, the winner becomes the favorite to win the title. Both young talents are evenly matched, promising a thrilling game.

Reuters | Updated: 07-06-2024 07:32 IST | Created: 07-06-2024 07:32 IST
Alcaraz vs Sinner: The Future of Tennis at French Open
Carlos Alcaraz

Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner will face off in a blockbuster French Open semi-final on Friday, as they resume a budding rivalry that could dominate the men's tour for years to come.

With defending champion Novak Djokovic having pulled out of the tournament due to a knee injury, the winner of the tie will be the nailed-on favourite to lift the Coupe des Mousquetaires and become the first new men's singles French Open champion since 2016. Friday's clash will be the first men's singles semi-final at Roland Garros contested between two players under the age of 23 since 2008, when Rafa Nadal beat Djokovic en route to his fourth title.

"I think everybody wants to watch this match," Alcaraz told reporters on Tuesday. "When the draw came out, I think everybody wanted Jannik on my side, playing the semi-final. I think it's going to be great for tennis and for the fans."

Alcaraz, 21, and 22-year-old Australian Open champion Sinner are now tied at 4-4 in their head-to-head record, and will meet for the third time in a Grand Slam and the first time at Roland Garros. Both players have landed in the semi-final having conceded only one set each in their previous five matches in this year's tournament, and the young Spaniard said he was expecting a gruelling battle.

"You have to run like it is a marathon, you know, side-to-side. Everything he does, he does it perfectly. The way that he hits the ball is unbelievable," Alcaraz said. "I love this kind of challenge, to have a really difficult battle against him. I love to find solutions, to find a way to beat him... I think those situations are great for tennis, when you have to try to find the right way."

Casper Ruud, runner-up for the last two years, and former world number two Alexander Zverev continue their bids for a maiden Grand Slam title when they meet in a repeat of last year's semi-final. Ruud has won just one out of his four matches at the French Open in straight sets, but the Norwegian will be significantly fresher than his German opponent after receiving a walkover in his quarter-final tie with Djokovic.

However, he will face a tricky test in Zverev, who will be eager to take the next step at the French Open after being eliminated in the semi-finals in the past three editions. Asked about facing Ruud after his 6-4 7-6(5) 6-4 victory over Alex de Minaur on Wednesday, Zverev told reporters: "Two finals in a row, third semi-final in a row, that speaks for itself.

"He's one of the best players on this surface, for sure. I think I have to play my best tennis to have a chance."

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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