Defending champion Novak Djokovic easily reaches the third round at the French Open. Super talent and co-favorite Carlos Alcaraz, on the other hand, has to fight for victory for a surprisingly long time in the Spanish duel of generations and even fend off a match point.
Co-favorite Carlos Alcaraz prevented an early exit at the French Open with a big fight. The 19-year-old shooting star of the scene won a Spanish duel of generations against his 15-year-old compatriot Albert Ramos-Vinolas in 4:34 playing time 6: 1, 6: 7 (7: 9), 5: 7, 7: 6 ( 7: 2), 6: 4 and can continue to dream of the first Grand Slam triumph. With four tournament victories this year, including the Masters in Miami and Madrid, and the jump to sixth place in the world rankings, the athlete from Murcia had played his way into the circle of title contenders for the most important clay court tournament.
After his comfortable first round win against the Argentinian qualifier Juan Ignacio, he bit his teeth on Ramos-Vinolas for a long time and clapped his hands over his head with relief after the converted match point. "I'm pretty tired," said Alcaraz, who had to fend off a match point in the fourth set: "I'm so happy with my performance."
Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal solved their task much more confidently. The world number one and defending champion from Serbia won his second round duel 6: 2, 6: 3, 7: 6 (7: 4) against Slovakian Alex Molcan and did not lose a set. Djokovic ended the match after 2:16 hours. "Everything is going in the right direction," he said afterwards. Nadal, 13-time tournament winner, prevailed in the evening match 6: 3, 6: 1, 6: 4 against Frenchman Corentin Moutet and also remains on course. Again there was no trace of physical problems that keep the Mallorcan busy.
Djokovic's season so far has been anything but silent. Being expelled from the country meant Djokovic missed the Australian Open, which Nadal won, and was also barred from competing at the Masters in Indian Wells and Miami due to his refusal to vaccinate. His comeback in April in Monte Carlo was unsuccessful, but then the 35-year-old found his way back and made an impressive claim with his triumph at the Masters in Rome. Now Djokovic wants to win the trophy again in Paris and catch up with record champion Nadal (21 titles) after Grand Slam titles.