PARIS (VG) (Carlos Alcaraz–Novak Djokovic 3–6, 7–5, 1–6, 1–6) Carlos Alcaraz stands no chance in contention for the final at the French Open after he suffered serious problems with his left foot.
Novak Djokovic thus took the last place – which later turned out to be against Casper Ruud – after Alcaraz suddenly got into trouble in the third set:
It was his left leg that didn’t work and he had to be treated after about two and a half hours of playing. Alcaraz may face a wall in demanding conditions.
– First of all thanks to Carlos, at this level the last thing you want is cramps. So I feel sorry for him. I hope he comes back very strong. He is very young and a fantastic player. “Thank you for the fighting spirit he showed,” Djokovic said in an interview at the stadium.
The BBC wrote that Djokovic was using the hot conditions in Paris to tire Alcaraz. The Spaniard was running on everything that came off the ball, and Djokovic sent him on many trips in the sweltering heat of the clay courts in Paris. It is said that it is 28 degrees, but it is not known what the temperature of the sun is in the field.
– If Alcaraz can get his hands on some minerals, then maybe it can help him come back to life a bit, says England player Naomi Broady BBC radio during the game.
– He needs salt, he continued.
Before the cramps, Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic each won a set. And what a fight before there was the health drama and leg cramps for Alcaraz. It is adventurous tennis.
– It’s not easy to maintain that intensity. But at the end of the second set he was the better player, he deserved to win that set, Djokovic told an interview at the stadium.
But then the cramps came and after that the Spaniard limped. But the match continued under the scorching sun. Alcaraz lost the next game to Djokovic, and was under medical observation again. Then the Serbian star took a 4-1 lead in the 3rd set, which she won easily as soon as Alcaraz left her no match. Cramps are no reason for medical attention, so Alcaraz had to finish the set.
Alcaraz went into the locker room and spent five minutes on the brace. Once again he returned to the pitch, to cheers from the crowd.
There was occasional boos at Djokovic, who could claim a 23rd Grand Slam title if he wins on Sunday. Then he made history, as the person with the most Grand Slam wins.
– I don’t understand why the audience booed when he celebrated a point. Was it because Alcaraz had a seizure in his head? She has no more cramps now, Naomi Broady told BBC Radio.
Djokovic was met with cheers and a few boos from the crowd after the win.
Ruud has met Djokovic four times, but never at a Grand Slam tournament. Ruud has never won a set against the Serbian tennis legend.
And there were some hard hitters on Philippe Chatrier on Friday:
Djokovic is playing the French Open for the 19th (!) time. He won this Grand Slam tournament in 2016 and 2021.
This is what Casper Ruud looks like when he shoots earning him a spot in Friday’s semifinals number two:
“Infuriatingly humble coffee guru. Travel practitioner. Freelance zombie fanatic. Certified problem solver. Food scholar. Student.”