Sixth final of the year. Fourteenth of his career. This time it will be at the ATP 500 at Queen's, in its debut in the tournament, where Carlos Alcaraz will look against Alex de Minaur, who beat Holger Rune 6-3 and 7-6 (2), his eleventh title, which would be the fifth in 2023 after winning in Indian Wells, Madrid, Barcelona and Buenos Aires. First attempt on grass, a fairly unexplored space for the man who, if imposed in the match this Sunday, will return to number 1 and will arrive as such at Wimbledon on July 3. Sebastian Korda also surrendered to the skills of the Spaniard, who prevailed 6-3, 6-4, in an hour and 21 minutes.

Alcaraz imposes. Also on grass. How could not a player who has achieved what he has achieved with only 20 years, even if he is almost a neophyte on this surface. If Grigor Dimitrov made two double faults in his first turn of serve in the quarters, Korda committed three, having previously collected the Spaniard's serve.

Korda, 22, could be one of those players nominated to argue head-on with Alcaraz. Contemporaries, they met for the first time in the final of the Next Gen ATP Finals of 2021, with a clear triumph of the Spaniard, they did it again in the following course in Monte Carlo, where the American won, and weeks later at Roland Garros, with victory of Alcaraz. Korda, 32nd, possesses weapons, but his pace has slowed due to injuries as well. He reappeared at the Madrid Masters after injuring his right wrist at the Australian Open.

Children's delight

It seems that Alcaraz has begun to lose respect for the herb. In some moments he moves with the same dexterity as on any other surface, making it this one that submits to the excellences of his game. He has a good time. He does not internalize the experience as a drink that must be assumed if one wants to consecrate himself as a great tennis player, but he seeks, tries things, plays, understood here the verb as full childish delight.

He did so in a first set where Korda tried to show his teeth. especially the rest, when his opponent did not hit the first. The American was pristine in the semifinals, without giving up a single partial, until he ran into Alcaraz, who, after the difficulties of his debut against Arthur Rinderknech, has acquired cruising speed.

The early break in the second set shot the tennis player from El Palmar, convinced of having undermined the confidence of his opponent, who increased his already exaggerated number of unforced errors. Alcaraz managed his harvest well and if he beats Minaur, whom he defeated last year in the semifinals of the Conde de Godó after neutralizing two match balls, he will recover the number 1 to the detriment of Novak Djokovic, who defeated him in the semifinals of Roland Garros.

"I feel better in every game, as if I've been playing on grass for ten years," he said at the foot of the court after the conclusion of the semifinal. "To arrive at Wimbledon as world No. 1 would be a dream, it's an extra motivation."

  • tennis
  • Carlos Alcaraz
  • Rafa Nadal
  • Novak Djokovic

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