Alcaraz Cruises Into Wimbledon Third Round

Spain’s Carlos Alcaraz celebrates after winning against France’s Alexandre Muller during their men’s singles tennis match on the fifth day of the 2023 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 7, 2023. (Photo by SEBASTIEN BOZON / AFP)

On Friday, Carlos Alcaraz advanced to the third round of Wimbledon after defeating Frenchman Alexandre Muller 6-4, 7-6 (7/2), 6-3.

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The Spanish top seed, who reached the last 16 last year, is seeking to become the Open Era’s third-youngest champion after Boris Becker and Bjorn Borg.

The 20-year-old, regarded as the greatest threat to defending champion Novak Djokovic, won his first round on Tuesday against French veteran Jeremy Chardy.

However, severe rain has disrupted the schedule at the All England Club, and Djokovic is a round ahead of his opponent, Stan Wawrinka, who plays later Friday.

A single break was enough for Alcaraz to seal the first set and he won the second-set tie-break to take an iron grip on the contest.

He broke 84th-ranked Muller again in the eighth game of the third set and served out for the match.

The US Open champion won his first grass court title at Queen’s last month.

“I’m really, really happy to play here again and this time with a win on this really beautiful court,” he said. “I wanted to enjoy every single second and I think I did.”

Alcaraz said he was learning quickly on grass — he is playing in only his fourth tournament on the surface.

“I’m playing really, really well on grass. I’m not an experienced guy like other players but I’m enjoying playing on grass… getting better every match that I play.

“Playing here in Wimbledon is something special. You feel different compared to other tournaments.”

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