US OPEN – Good Morning Flushing: Give us Alcaraz-Sinners for 15 years!

US OPEN - Good Morning Flushing: Give us Alcaraz-Sinners for 15 years!

The story of the day

To say that some are worried about the future of tennis… The so famous Big 3, so out of the ordinary, has made this beginning of the 21st century a special era. That of all records. Federer, Nadal and Djokovic (in chronological order, careful precision, just in case…) have monopolized the debates and the vast majority of titles for more than fifteen years now, soon twenty for the first named. After them, the deluge? The abyssal void? The end of tennis, even?

After them, it will be different. Perhaps with greater volatility at the top, a fairer distribution of wealth. But believe it or not, tennis will recover from their departure. As he recovered from the departure of all the others. Even in the short term, the future looks good, because the present is already bright. If proof was needed, Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner provided it on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning. 40 years between them but already able to offer us that.

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A match that will go down in history: the highlights of an exceptional Alcaraz-Sinner

“That” is the game of the year. One of those matches we talk about ten, twenty or thirty years later. There was everything in this evening. The quality of play Come on, looking for the little beast, maybe the first set will remain as the “weakest”. He was not intrinsically but for what followed. The second-third-fourth round trilogy constituted the heart of this bestial duel, of a sublime almost wild beauty. There, Alcaraz and Sinner reached great heights.

But there is no great moment in tennis without a great fight and this one was huge. You will surely read or hear that Jannik Sinner “choked” when concluding. He tensed, yes, when he served for the match in the fourth set. But he had recovered from so many things before, and he will recover again in the fifth set by unbreaking once, that to consider that he failed mentally is not only an insult to the Italian but also to tennis.

Over five sets and more than five hours, they took turns folding, missing opportunities, committing a fault at the wrong time. But both kept fighting in the middle of the ring when they were on the ropes and, it was believed, about to go to the mat. But as there is no draw, one had to strike the last blow and the other gave way definitively. That doesn’t make the loser a wetter. And certainly not Sinner tonight.

They were both extraordinary in the game but even more so in the fight. No wonder: Alcaraz and Sinner are not only two formidable players, but also two remarkable warriors. It takes the combination of these two factors in both players to lead to a match of this type. And that’s what makes you so optimistic about the next five, ten, maybe fifteen years.

They had already faced each other three times, but this fourth opus will perhaps mark the real beginning of their common history, if they manage to carve out a significant share of the cake over the next few years. Yes, tennis is fine, thank you for him. Alcaraz-Sinners, we want to take some for fifteen years, to savor them as we savored the “Fedal”, “Fedovic” and “Djokodal”. Glory to Alcaraz and Sinner, and long live the “Alcanner”!

Alcaraz: “I can’t believe what I just did”

The point of the night

Crazy inspiration. A symbol among many others to testify to what this match was like.

You have to see it to believe it: Alcaraz signs the point of the tournament with a brilliant inspiration

We (also) liked

The way Tiafoe confirmed. The match after is never easy to manage when you have just signed the feat of a lifetime. Rafael Nadal’s faller in the round of 16, Frances Tiafoe, overcome with emotion, ended in tears. It was legitimate to wonder if he would manage to follow up against Andrey Rublev. He did it, and with style by winning in three sets (7-6, 7-6, 6-4). It’s just as strong. Rublev is no Nadal, but it’s all about context. Tiafoe handled it masterfully.

Tiafoe is still on his cloud: the recap of his winning quarter against Rublev in video

Sabalenka’s very clean match. Maybe it’s her miracle status in this US Open, but she’s only been going from strength to strength since having a foot and four toes in the grave against Kaia Kanepi in the second round. Against Karolina Pliskova, the Belarusian delivered a solid match. In service, in particular, with 7 aces against 3 double faults. If she manages to keep this ratio (over the season, she was before the US Open at 189 aces for … 339 doubles). From 8.3 doubles per game in 2022, it fell to 5.6 in New York.

Despite Pliskova’s awakening, Sabalenka returns to the semis: The highlights

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The very rambling Swiatek-Pegula. Funny match, not necessarily funny to watch. Very nervous, Iga Swiatek and Jessica Pegula offered a rather mediocre show to the public of the Arthur-Ashe court. So much so that, uncommonly, during the traditional interview after the meeting, the world number one apologized to the public at the microphone of Mary Jo Fernandez. Special mention to the second set, illegible: twelve games, ten breaks. And then, if the statistics never tell everything, this one is still telling: the Polish and the American have accumulated 61 unforced errors. For 36 winning moves. But for Swiatek, the essential is there. She’s in the semis.

Swiatek: ‘Sorry if the game was boring, I’ve been fighting with these flying balls from the start’

Rublev’s limits. It’s an image that hurt. After his loss to Frances Tiafoe, Andrey Rublev sat in his chair for a long time, shedding tears that seemed to qualify his anger as much as his sadness. Anger against himself because this sixth failure in six Grand Slam quarter-finals again highlights the current limits of the Russian at this stage of the competition. He was never able to break free against a Tiafoe in a trance. Then there is the way. Not only Rublev bowed, but he was felt totally helpless.

Three stats to remember

2.5. One of the reasons why Frances Tiafoe is in the semi-finals of this US Open is certainly due to her “clutch” side in this tournament. The American has played six tie-breaks in five matches. He won them all. He added two to his list on Wednesday against Andrey Rublev, including one overflown: 7-0. It is the second time that he sticks a bubble to his opponent in a decisive game. Marcos Giron had suffered the same fate in the second round. Of these six tie-breaks, Tiafoe conceded only 15 points, or 2.5 on average. Impressive.

21%. When you concede seven breaks in two sets, inevitably, the stats in the service cannot be brilliant. But Jessica Pegula was still very strong. She only won 21% of the points behind her second ball: 6 out of 29. In the second set alone, where she was broken five times, it’s even more catastrophic: 17% (4 out of 23).

2005. After two failures in New York last year against Félix Auger-Aliassime and at Roland-Garros last spring against Alexander Zverev, Carlos Alcaraz therefore reached the semi-finals of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in his youth. career. So young that at 19 years and 4 months, he is the earliest semi-finalist of one of the four biggest tournaments in the world since Rafael Nadal in 2005, at Roland-Garros. We don’t want to find elements of comparison between the Mallorcan and his designated heir at all costs, but Carlitos doesn’t help us much…

A point like this signed after 5 hours of play, it’s possible: the incredible joust between Sinner and Alcaraz

The declaration: Aryna Sabalenka

She spoke on Wednesday evening about the ban on Russians and Belarusians from participating in Wimbledon this summer.

Yes it was hard. I missed it because I love this tournament and I have very good memories. I took the opportunity to have a second off-season. I worked a lot, especially on my serve. But when I was at the gym and Wimbledon was on TV, I couldn’t watch. It’s hard, but it motivated me for the rest of the season. I try to tell myself that I’m just an athlete. I have nothing to do with politics.

Just to know…

Are we okay? Next night, everyone up at 1am to watch Caroline Garcia’s semi-final against Ons Jabeur.

What poster for the men’s final? Ruud or Khachanov? Alcaraz or Tiafoe?

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The match not to be missed on Thursday: Jabeur – Garcia

It’s thrill time for Caroline Garcia. First French semi-finalist in Grand Slam since Marion Bartoli at Wimbledon in 2013, the Lyonnaise will discover the last four of a Major against Ons Jabeur. The final is here, so close, but if his course has been sparkling since the start of the fortnight (no set lost, never more than four games given up in a round), it is undoubtedly the most difficult obstacle to overcome. who walks in front of her. Because Ons Jabeur is one hell of a customer.

The Tunisian has taken another step since the last Wimbledon Without always being imperial, she exudes a great force of conviction. It is this, even more than his dominance in direct confrontations with Caroline Garcia since… the juniors, which calls for caution. But she also deserves to be trusted, for what she has shown in the last ten days and these last three months. In any case, it will be a great moment to live. Let her take advantage of it, she whose happiness to be there and to express herself as she has undoubtedly always dreamed of doing shines through on the court.

Jabeur: “I’m happy to see Caroline back in her place”

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