Carlos Alcaraz: Beating Djokovic to win Wimbledon would make title super special

The world number one stands in the way of Novak Djokovic winning a record-equalling eighth Wimbledon title.

Andy Sims
Friday 14 July 2023 21:26 BST
Carlos Alcaraz will face defending champion Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon men’s final (Victoria Jones/PA)
Carlos Alcaraz will face defending champion Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon men’s final (Victoria Jones/PA) (PA Wire)

Carlos Alcaraz wants the scalp of Novak Djokovic in a Wimbledon final on his CV.

The 20-year-old became the youngest man to reach the final since fellow Spaniard Rafael Nadal in 2006 with a commanding 6-3 6-3 6-3 victory over Russian Daniil Medvedev.

Alcaraz, the world number one and top seed, will face Djokovic, the seven-time champion who is 16 years his senior, in the ultimate generation game on Centre Court.

The US Open champion could be forgiven for waiting for Djokovic to finally disappear from the scene – something the Serbian shows no sign of doing yet – before Alcaraz can begin racking up more grand slam titles.

But he said: “It gives you extra motivation. I think it’s more special to play the final against a legend from our sport.

“If I win, it could be amazing for me – not only win a Wimbledon title but to do it against Novak would be super special.

“But I always say if you want to be the best, you have to beat the best. Novak is one of them. It would be great if I can do it.”

Medvedev, the third seed and a former US Open champion, has been playing some superb grass-court tennis this fortnight.

But Alcaraz is no respecter of reputations and the Russian was barely in the match until a couple of breaks of serve were exchanged in the third set.

Even then, Alcaraz finished Medvedev off with a brutal forehand, his 27th winner of the semi-final.

“This one probably was one of my best matches, not only on grass but on the tour,” he added. “I rate it like eight out of 10, something like that.

“It was amazing for me. I showed a great level. Yeah, probably one of my best matches.”

Alcaraz had only played six matches on grass when he arrived at Queen’s Club last month, yet he took the title and has made serene progress in SW19.

“It could become my best surface,” he said with a smile.

This one probably was one of my best matches, not only on grass but on the tour

Carlos Alcaraz

“No, but I always like to play on grass. Probably after this year even more.”

It was a victory which also spared Wimbledon chiefs the uncomfortable situation of the Princess of Wales handing a trophy to, and shaking hands with, a player from Russia, after they were banned from the Championships last year due to the war in Ukraine.

Medvedev said: “Maybe against other guys you can be playing not bad, you’re going to have your chances, during the match you’re going to find something to work with.

“With Carlos, you need to be at your absolute best and that’s how you can win. Unfortunately, I was not.”

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