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Other SportsWimbledon: Alcaraz made to fight for quarter-final place

Wimbledon: Alcaraz made to fight for quarter-final place

Carlos Alcaraz is into the Wimbledon quarter-final but was pushed all the way by 16th seed Ugo Humbert.

The 21-year-old defending champion turned on the style on his way to winning the opening set on Centre Court but the French No1 produced a gritty display to ensure the three which followed were far more nerve-wracking for the Spaniard – at one stage breaking his serve four games in a row.

After a slightly slow start Alcaraz eventually made light work of the opening set, unleashing a 107mph forehand across court on his way to winning the eighth game.

The third seed sealed a 6-3 win with a couple more big forehands and left-handed Humbert eventually netted a backhand to seal it.

The second set was far closer with Humbert serving well and returning aggressively and Alcarez saved four break points in the fifth game of the second set.

He then pinched the second set against the odds, producing a neat drop-shot to force deuce at 5-4 up and then earning a break point, and set point.

Humbert was in full control of the final point, having Alcaraz sliding onto his backside beyond the baseline at one stage, but just could not kill it off and eventually sent a routine volley at the net long to surrender the second set 6-4 and spark wild celebrations from the Spaniard.

The Frenchman did not allow his head to drop and won six straight games in the third set with a triple break of serve, to take it 6-1.

Alcaraz broke to start the fourth set but Humbert replied in the very next game to level the scores, only for Alcaraz to make it three straight breaks to take charge.

Humbert replied in the sixth game off the back of some more aggressive early returns – breaking the Spaniard for the fifth time in six matches.

Alcarez eventually produced the crucial break in the 11th game of the set and saw the match out for a 6-3, 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 win to go into the last eight.

Alcaraz admitted after the match: “Playing lefties is always tricky, no matter the surface. I played my first leftie at Queen’s so I learnt a little bit from that. I felt great playing today, I think I played a really high level and playing a leftie I tried not to think about it and just played my own game.”

Alex Hoad
Alex Hoad
Alex has more than 15 years' experience in sports journalism and has reported on multiple Olympics, World Cups and European Championships in additional to Champions League, Europa League and domestic football.
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