Jannik Sinner secures No. 1 ranking, joins Carlos Alcaraz in French semis

League: Tennis

Posted on: 04 Jun, 2024 at 10:07 PM

Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports

No. 2 seed Jannik Sinner of Italy and No. 3 seed Carlos Alcaraz of Spain will collide in the French Open semifinals after each star posted straight-sets wins in the quarterfinals on Tuesday in Paris.

Sinner defeated No. 10 seed Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 6-2, 6-4, 7-6 (3). Alcaraz topped No. 9 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece 6-3, 7-6 (3), 6-4.

Sinner, the Australian Open champion last January, has yet to lose in a Grand Slam this calendar year. His win coupled with Novak Djokovic's withdrawal from the tournament due to a knee injury guaranteed that Sinner will become the No. 1 player in the ATP rankings on Monday.

"What can I say? First of all, it is every player's dream to become No. 1 in the world," Sinner said. "In the other way, seeing Novak retiring here I think is disappointing. I wish him a speedy recovery."

Sinner hit eight aces without a double fault and won a whopping 43 of his 53 first-service points (81.1 percent). He lost the first point of the third-set tiebreaker before storming ahead 5-2 and ultimately winning on his first match point.

"We have played a couple of times before and know what to expect," Sinner said of Dimitrov. "We played a final in Miami and it is always tough to play against him. He is such a great talent and nice guy. My performance was very solid, especially the first two sets. I had a little bit of pressure when serving for the match, but this is normal, this is tennis."

Alcaraz and Sinner are tied 4-4 in their all-time head-to-head series. Sinner is 2-0 against Alcaraz at the Grand Slams.

"It's a really difficult challenge," Alcaraz said of facing Sinner. "Right now, he's the best player in the world, or the player who is playing the best tennis right now. What can I say about him? We've played great matches ... high level, and I'm glad to have him in the tour at this level.

"Thanks to him, I push myself to be better, to be a better player, to give my 100 percent every day, to wake up in the morning and want to improve my game to try to beat him."

Alcaraz did not encounter much trouble finishing off Tsitsipas in just two hours and 15 minutes. He converted 4 of 6 break-point opportunities and won 45 of 61 first-service points (73.8 percent).

Tsitsipas had 26 winners, nearly matching Alcaraz's 27, but committed 33 unforced errors while Alcaraz had 21.

"I think it was a really good match," Alcaraz said. "I played great. I think there weren't up and downs in my game. I controlled very well my emotions, myself on the court.

"I was really calm in the moments I had to be and I'm really happy with the way that I managed everything, the way that I played and to play a semifinal here again in Roland-Garros."

--Field Level Media