Carlos Alcaraz Cruises Past Musetti, Pays Tribute To Coach Ferrero At French Open - UBITENNIS
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Carlos Alcaraz Cruises Past Musetti, Pays Tribute To Coach Ferrero At French Open



Carlos Alcaraz avenged his loss to Lorenzo Musetti on the Tour last year with a clinical win over the Italian at the French Open on Sunday. 


The world No.1 showed signs of nerves early on against Musetti before storming to a 6-3, 6-2, 6-2, victory in Paris. It is the second year in a row that Alcaraz has reached the last eight of the tournament and he has extended his winning streak at Grand Slam tournaments to 11 wins. In his latest performance, the Spaniard blasted 40 winners and broke his opponent seven times during the 128-minute match. 

“I think I played at such a great level,” Alcaraz said during his on-court interview. 
“I played really a complete match from the first ball until the last. I’m really happy to get through this round against Lorenzo.”

Initially, the top seed struggled to find his range on the Phillippe Chatrier Court as he hit six unforced errors in the first two games to fall behind 0-2 to Musetti. Despite the sluggish start, Alcaraz soon got his momentum going with the help of a five-game winning streak to establish his stronghold in the opening set despite some impressive shots from his opponent. After just over 40 minutes the Spaniard clinched the opener by firing a forehand winner.

A similar scenario occurred in the second frame with both players exchanging breaks before Alcaraz dominated the proceedings. At one point, Musetti’s frustration got the better of him as he fired a ball into the crowd out of temper whilst down 2-4. As a result of his actions, he was issued with a code violation for ball abuse. Meanwhile, Alcaraz powered his way to a two-set lead. 

In pole position, Alcaraz cruised towards the finish line. He worked his way to his first match point before a Musetti forehand error secured him the victory. In his first four matches played at Roland Garros this year, the only player he has dropped a set to was Taro Daniel in the second round. 

“I try not to think about being No.1 or the pressure. I try to put all of those thoughts outside of my mind. I try to just play tennis and enjoy it,” the world No.1 replied when asked about how he handles his nerves.
“To smile, to enjoy and trying to make impossible shots to make people watching that match enjoy it is all I think about when playing.” He added. 

After his latest triumph, Alcaraz also paid tribute to his coach Juan Carlos Ferrero who has been mentoring him since he was a teenager. This year marks the 20th anniversary of when Ferrero won the French Open crowd in what was his first and only Grand Slam title as a player.

 “He’s my friend, my coach and my (second) father as well. I learnt a lot from him since working with him,” he said. “We started (working together) when I was 15 years old with a lot of things to learn and improve. Thanks to him we started playing juniors, Futures, Challengers… every single category of tennis.”
“There are a lot of things to learn from him. For me, it is really important to improve off the court. I’m grateful to not only have him in tennis but outside of the sport.”

It is the fourth time the 21-year-old has reached the last eight of a Grand Slam tournament in nine he has played. His win-loss at major tournaments now stands at 27-7 and this season he has won 34 out of 37 matches played so far. 

Awaiting Alcaraz in the last eight will be either 2021 finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas or Austrian underdog Sebastian Ofner. He leads Tsitsipas 4-0 in their head-to-head but has never played Ofner on the Tour. 


Tennis Player Disqualified From Shanghai Qualifying Match Two Points Away From Victory



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It will be a match that Australia’s Marc Polmans will never forget but for all the wrong reasons.


The World No.140 looked to be on the verge of victory against Italy’s Stefano Napolitano when leading their match 7-6(3), 6-6(6-5), in the final round of qualifying at the Shanghai Masters. However, disaster struck at the next point when Polmans temper got the better of him and subsequently cost him.

With match point, he approached the net to hit a backhand shot but it ended up in the net. Prompting the frustrated 26-year-old to hit a tennis ball that unfortunately hit the umpire. As a result of that action, he was automatically disqualified from the match which handed Napolitano the victory and a place in the main draw.

It is not the first time a tennis player has been disqualified for such an incident. During a 2017 Davis Cup tie between Canada and Great Britain, Denis Shapovalov was disqualified for firing a tennis ball that hit the umpire’s eye. Novak Djokovic was also disqualified from the 2020 US Open after hitting a ball that accidentally struck a lines judge.

“Players shall not violently, dangerously or with anger hit, kick or throw
a tennis ball while on the grounds of the tournament site except in the reasonable pursuit of a point during a match (including warm-up),
” the 2023 ATP rulebook outlines.
“For purposes of this rule, abuse of balls is defined as intentionally or reckless- ly hitting a ball out of the enclosure of the court, hitting a ball dangerously or recklessly within the court or hitting a ball with disregard of the conse- quences.’
“Violation of this section shall subject a player to a fine of up to $350 for each violation. In addition, if such violation occurs during a match, the player shall be penalized in accordance with the Point Penalty Schedule.”

It is a tough lesson for Polmans to learn. He was on the verge of playing in the main draw of a Masters 1000 event for the first time in his career. He is currently the 10th highest-ranked Australian player on the ATP Tour and reached the final of a Challenger event in Guangzhou, China last month.

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Team World One Win Away From Victory in Laver Cup

Team World take a huge 10-2 lead over Team Europe heading into the final day



Image via Laver Cup twitter

After losing the first four editions of the Laver Cup, Team World look set to win the event for a second time as the event reaches its conclusion tomorrow.


Team World Captain John McEnroe was thrilled with the day’s results but warned against complacency: “We’re just going to keep doing what we’re doing. The job’s not done but we’re pretty close.”

American duo Taylor Fritz and Frances Tiafoe both earned straight sets wins over Andrey Rublev and Hubert Hurkacz, while Felix Auger-Aliassime and Ben Shelton beat Hurkacz and Gael Monfils.

“I want to play well for the guys,” said Tiafoe after his singles victory. “I played really well tonight. Just being in a team environment is so foreign to us as tennis players, it’s such an individual sport.”

After winning his third singles match in three appearances at the Laver Cup, Fritz was also motivated to do well:

“Yesterday, all the guys played really well. I felt that and wanted to come out on court and show what I can do. That definitely motivated me. Any type of team environment, I feel like it always elevates my game. I feel like my record in team events is really strong because I have a team cheering for me. I get pumped up. I’m excited to play for them. It just adds more pressure and fire to it. I think I play better in those situations.”

The doubles was a typically dynamic and feisty affair, and after the match Shelton was full of praise for his partner:

“It’s amazing, when you play with a guy who serves and returns like Felix, is as athletic as him, and goes back for the overhead as strong as him, it’s a fun time,” said Shelton. “We call him ‘Laver Cup Felix’ because he turns into something special this week, just glad I got to share the court with him at least once.”

Auger-Aliassime returned the compliments: “The best comes out of me when I’m playing not only for myself but for team-mates. Ben carried me through the end of that match, it was tough for me to get it done.”

Casper Ruud, meanwhile, beat Tommy Paul for Europe’s only points so far.

Matches on the final day are worth three points each – meaning that Team Europe would have to win all four remaining matches to prevent Team World from winning the trophy.

T. Fritz def A. Rublev 6-2, 7-6
F. Tiafoe def H. Hurkacz 7-5, 6-3
F. Auger-Aliassime & B. Shelton def H.Hurkacz & G. Monfils 7-5, 6-4
C. Ruud def T. Paul 7-6, 6-2

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ATP RANKINGS UPDATE: Novak Djokovic, No.1 once more



After the US Open the Serbian champion reclaims top spot. Alexander Zverev is back in the Top 10


By Roberto Ferri

Don’t ever underestimate the heart of a champion”

Rudy Tomjanovich coined this maxim just after his Houston Rockets won the NBA championship in 1995. He was paying homage to Akeem Holajuwon. It perfectly suits the heart of Daniil Medvedev, who proved 99% of tennis fans in the world to be wrong, convinced as they were that he would lose the semifinal to former No 1 Carlos Alcaraz.

But his dream to win a second US Open, after his triumph in 2021, was shattered by another champion, whose heart and class is even greater: that’s Novak Djokovic, who affixes his seal on his return to No.1, equalling Margaret Court Smith’s record of 24 majors.

Djokovic dethroning Alcaraz is not the only change in the top 20: Sascha Zverev is back in the top 10 after almost one year and Ben Shelton, great protagonist of the Us Open, debuts in the top 20 best players in the world.

TOP 20

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A few comments:

Stefanos Tsitsipas, Andrei Rublev and Alexander Zverev gain 2 positions.

Ben Shelton devours 28 positions.

Sinner, Tiafoe, Norrie and Dimitrov lose one.

Casper Ruud and Karen Khachanov, runner up and semi-finalist respectively  at the 2022 US  Open, drop 4 positions.

One step forward for Fritz, de Minaur, Paul, Auger-Aliassime and Hurkacz.


From 12 to 19 November the 8 best players of the ranking based on the points earned in the ongoing solar season will be playing the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin.

Will Novak Djokovic succeed in winning a second straight title? He appears to be heading in the right direction.


Thanks to his triumph at the US Open the Serbian overtakes Alcaraz also in the Race to Turin.

Jannik Sinner holds fourth spot while Andrei Rublev overtakes Stefanos Tsitsipas and is now fifth.

The eighth position is occupied by Alexander Zverev.

Last year runner up, Casper Ruud is currently 10th. This means he would feature in Turin as a reserve.


The Next Gen Finals, dedicated to the best under 21s, (8 effectives and 2 reserves) of the season will take place this year in Gedda, Saudi Arabia.

The 2022 winner, Brandon Nakashima, will not be defending his title, since he was born in 2001.

PositionPlayerCountryPtsYOB ATP rank
6Van AsscheFrance597200469
12Llamas RuizSpain3702002133

Taking for granted that Alcaraz and, most likely Rune, will be playing the ATP Finals, we have included in the chart the 12 current top under 21s.


Besides Ben Shelton, other 11 players have achieved their career highest this week.

We tribute a double applause to the four players who are making their debut in the top 100.

The 25-year-old Croatian Borna Gojo, 22-year-old Australian Rinky Hijkata and the Swiss next gen Dominic Stricker all reap the reward for their brilliant runs at the US Open. Seyboth Wild, the Brazilian who stunned Medvedev in the first round of Roland Garros leaps to No.76 after winning the Challenger in Como last week.

Seyboth Wild76Brazil30

Translated by Kingsley Elliot Kaye

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