Tennis: Alcaraz powers past Dimitrov into Queen's semi-finals

AFP , Friday 23 Jun 2023

Carlos Alcaraz remains in the hunt for his first grass court title after the world number two beat former champion Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 6-4 to reach the semi-finals at Queen's Club on Friday.

Spain's Carlos Alcaraz returns to Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov during their men s quarter-final match at the Cinch ATP tennis Championships at Queen's Club in west London on June 23, 2023. Photo: AFP


Alcaraz admitted earlier in the week to watching videos of Roger Federer and Andy Murray to learn how to move on the grass and appears to be finding his feet on the surface ahead of Wimbledon next month.

Since surviving a marathon first round encounter with French lucky loser Arthur Rinderknech, Alcaraz has not dropped a set to reach the last four in London.

A break in the first game was enough to win the Spaniard the first set as Dimitrov missed three chances to break back in the sixth game.

The Bulgarian, who won the Queen's title in 2014, got off to a flier in the second set as he led 3-0.

Alcaraz battled back to lead 4-3, only to give the break back for 4-4.

However, the US Open champion was gifted the chance to serve for the match when an error-strewn game from Dimitrov threw away his serve to love.

Alcaraz took full advantage to set up a semi-final clash with Sebastian Korda, who beat British number one Cameron Norrie 6-4, 7-6 (7/1).

"Grigor is a really top player in every surface, but even more here on grass, he feels the ball very well," said Alcaraz.

"I played very well since the beginning. The two matches before helped me a lot."

Second seed Holger Rune said he was fired up by Lorenzo Musetti's smashed overhead that hit the Dane in his 6-4, 7-5 quarter-final win.

The world number six is also into his first semi-final on the grass.

"He can do what he wants," said Rune. "I mean, it's not the best thing to do, for sure. But again, it is legal. He can hit the ball where he wants to.

"It just gave me fire in the belly to beat him even more. I'm super happy to manage to beat him in two sets."

Rune faces Australia's Alex De Minaur in the last four after he beat Frenchman Adrian Mannarino 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.

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