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In the semi-final of the China Open, Carlos Alcaraz, the world’s second-ranked player, put on a dazzling display of his extraordinary skills and unwavering determination. He secured a dominant victory over Casper Ruud, who is ranked ninth in the world, with a final score of 6-4, 6-2. The match lasted for an hour and 44 minutes, underlining Alcaraz’s impressive track record of reaching the semi-finals in 12 out of 14 tournaments in 2023.
Alcaraz’s outstanding performance has firmly placed him on the path to compete for the tournament title. This victory presents an opportunity for him to earn 500 ATP points and narrow the gap in the ATP Race standings, where he is chasing the formidable Novak Djokovic. The Spaniard showcased his prowess by delivering six aces and demonstrating remarkable proficiency in both his first and second serves. He encountered just two break point opportunities from Ruud and lost his serve only once.
In contrast, Casper Ruud struggled to keep up with Alcaraz’s explosive baseline game. Right from the beginning of the match, Ruud found himself digging deep to fend off five break points in the very first game. Although he managed to survive that grueling 15-minute battle and hold serve, his early lead quickly evaporated when Alcaraz seized an opportunity to break Ruud’s serve, taking a 2-0 lead.
Ruud did briefly establish a 3-0 lead by forcing an error from Carlos in the third game and holding serve at 30. However, Alcaraz remained undeterred and made a strong comeback, breaking Ruud’s serve in the fifth game after Ruud’s errant smash, thus regaining his momentum.
Throughout the match, Carlos Alcaraz demonstrated remarkable mental fortitude, saving a break point in the sixth game with a beautifully executed drop shot winner. He capitalized on Ruud’s error in the subsequent game, securing his second consecutive break and a 4-3 lead.
With impeccable serving, Alcaraz held his serve at love in the eighth game, securing a crucial 5-4 advantage and the opportunity to serve for the set. Maintaining his composure, he delivered an ace, clinching the first set 6-4 after a hard-fought 54 minutes on the court.
Alcaraz continued his impressive performance into the second set, holding serve after a challenging opening game with three deuces and applying substantial pressure on Ruud’s serve in the following game. He defended brilliantly on the fourth break point and capitalized on Ruud’s crucial mistake, earning a break and taking a 2-1 lead.
The young sensation displayed a formidable service game in the fourth and sixth games, extending his lead to 4-2 and edging closer to victory. In the seventh game, Carlos Alcaraz once again broke Ruud’s serve, putting himself in an advantageous position to close out the match.
With unwavering determination, Alcaraz served for the victory in the next game, and he did so in style, holding at 15 to secure the win and advance to the semi-finals. His exceptional performance left him filled with confidence and optimism about his prospects in the tournament. Carlos Alcaraz’s remarkable journey in the China Open continued to captivate tennis fans worldwide, showcasing his extraordinary skills and promising future in the sport.