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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Miami Open Tennis: Dimitrov Stuns Alcaraz in Quarter-Finals, Sets Up Zverev Clash

Grigor Dimitrov stunned world number two Carlos Alcaraz in the quarter-finals of the Miami Open on Thursday, delivering a scintillating performance to secure a 6-2, 6-4 victory. The Bulgarian’s sparkling and energetic display proved too much for the Spanish top seed, setting up a semi-final clash with Germany’s Alexander Zverev, who overcame rising Hungarian star Fabian Marozsan 6-3, 7-5.

From the outset, Dimitrov showed no fear as he attacked Alcaraz’s game, breaking early to establish a 3-0 lead. The Bulgarian seized every opportunity, frequently approaching the net and keeping Alcaraz on the move. Dimitrov appeared to be cruising towards a comfortable two-set victory after breaking Alcaraz in the fourth game and holding for a 4-1 lead. However, the Spaniard fought back, breaking Dimitrov to close the gap to 4-3 after an entertaining rally culminated in a cross-court winner.

With the match back on serve, a tie-break seemed inevitable, but Dimitrov had other plans. Serving to stay in the match, Alcaraz went wide, allowing Dimitrov to break and celebrate his hard-fought victory. “In order to win against him, you have to play at your best. That’s just how it is,” Dimitrov remarked. “I came into the match very focused and extremely clear on what I had to do. Sometimes simplicity is genius.”

Alcaraz, clearly frustrated by his opponent’s brilliant performance, conceded that he felt like a 13-year-old on the court. “I have a lot of frustrations right now, because he made me feel like I’m 13 years old. You know, it was crazy,” Alcaraz said. “I was talking to my team saying that I don’t know what I have to do. I don’t know his weakness. I don’t know anything.” The Spaniard acknowledged that Dimitrov’s game was perfect, and he couldn’t find solutions during the match.

In the other quarter-final, Alexander Zverev overcame a spirited challenge from Fabian Marozsan, who had already claimed two top-10 victories in the tournament. Despite Marozsan’s best efforts, Zverev’s powerful serve and consistent play proved too much, with the German breaking the Hungarian in his final service game to secure the win.

Zverev expressed his delight at the opportunity to return to the final in Miami, a tournament he clearly enjoys. “I love Miami, I always said that, obviously I’m happy to be back at these kind of late stages of these tournaments, playing the best players in the world,” he said. The German also praised Marozsan, predicting that the Hungarian will continue to climb the rankings and become one of the top players himself.

The stage is now set for an enthralling semi-final lineup, with Dimitrov facing Zverev and Jannik Sinner taking on Daniil Medvedev in a rematch of the Australian Open final, which Sinner won in January. As the Miami Open comes to an exciting finale, fans can expect more thrilling encounters and exceptional displays of tennis from some of the world’s best players.

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