At the Accor Arena,
Clearly, Bercy is not successful for Carlos Alcaraz. He fell against Hugo Gaston in the 8th round two years ago and retired last year during his quarter-final against Holger Rune, the victim of a muscle tear in his abdomen. This Tuesday evening, the Spaniard was dominated in barely 1h38 of play by the surprising Roman Safiullin. Clearly not at 100% and not very energetic, the Spaniard was only a shadow of himself on Tuesday evening. He did have a break in advance in both sets (2-1 in the first, 3-1 in the second) but each time, he saw Safiullin come back. The Murcian is already leaving the Accor Arena. Safiulin will face Karen Khachanov in the next round. “I'm not going to say I'm 100%, because that would be a lie. It’s the end of the season, which has been very long, demanding, it’s normal for problems to appear, we have to deal with it, play as best as possible while managing these problems,” the Spaniard warned the day before in a conference press. He hadn't lied. In the fight with Novak Djokovic for the throne of world number 1, Alcaraz, he risks losing valuable points after this failure. The Serbian at the 24 Grand Slams, who approaches Paris with 500 points in advance in the Race, the ranking established over the calendar year, must play his first match on Wednesday, against the Argentinian Tomas Martin Etcheverry.
Exempted from the first round, Alcaraz returned to the competition after missing out in Basel the previous week, with a sore left foot and back. Since his coronation at Wimbledon at the expense of Novak Djokovic in July, the prodigy has been in doubt, far from his usual standards, having experienced a mixed Asian tour, with eliminations in the semi-finals at the ATP 500 in Beijing and in eighths at the Masters 1000 in Shanghai. Rebound expected at the Masters which will bring together the eight best players in the world in mid-November in Turin.