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Tennis: double title holder, Alcaraz leaves Madrid

Carlos Alcaraz, world No.

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Tennis: double title holder, Alcaraz leaves Madrid

Carlos Alcaraz, world No.3 and double title holder, was overthrown in the quarter-finals of the Masters 1000 in Madrid by world No.8 Andrey Rublev 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 in barely two hours on Wednesday .

Alcaraz launched his clay court season in the Spanish capital, after a month without competition, the fault of his painful right forearm which had forced him to abandon Monte-Carlo and Barcelona.

For a place in the final, Rublev will face either the American Taylor Fritz (13th) or the Argentinian Francisco Cerundolo (22nd), opposed in the evening.

In the previous round the day before, Alcaraz narrowly escaped, after almost three hours, against the German Jan-Lennard Struff (24th), 6-3, 6-7 (5/7), 7-6 (7/4), in a reissue of the 2023 final.

In Madrid's “Caja magica” with the roof closed on Wednesday afternoon, the young Spaniard, right arm wrapped in a protective sleeve as since the start of the Madrid tournament, showed himself far from his best level from the second set onwards by accumulating mistakes and questionable choices. On the contrary, Rublev was more and more impactful, serving and exchanging.

The protégé of Juan Carlos Ferrero, who had only registered his participation the day before his entry into the running, will nevertheless have played four matches on Spanish clay. He is now expected in Rome, the last Masters 1000 on ocher before Roland-Garros (May 26-June 9), which begins next week.

Alcaraz remained on fourteen matches won consecutively in Madrid. In four participations, he had so far only experienced defeat once, in 2021 against Rafael Nadal, precisely on his 18th birthday.

His elimination comes the day after that of Nadal, who was beaten in the round of 16 on Tuesday evening for his very last participation in the Madrid tournament, at the age of 37.

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