Monday, January 24, 2022

US Open 2021 Quarterfinals: Carlos Alcaraz to Leylah Fernandez, 4 youngsters script history at US Open singles

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US Open 2021 Quarterfinals: Youngsters create history, enter Quarterfinals at US Open– As many as two 18-year-old players have created history at the ongoing US Open 2021 by making it to the Quarterfinals of the grand slam events. They are Carlos Alcaraz Garfia and Leylah Fernandez. British Prodigy Emma Raducanu can also continue her sensational performance and join the specialist list by defeating Shelby Rogers on Monday. Meanwhile, 21-year-old Felix Auger Aliassime who stunned Roger Federer earlier this year has joined the list of Quarterfinalists at the US Open 2021.

US Open 2021 Quarterfinals: Youngsters create history, enter Quarterfinals at US Open 

Carlos Alcaraz

Carlos Alcaraz became the youngest player in the Open era to reach the quarter-finals of the men’s tournament at Flushing Meadows after the 18-year-old Spaniard beat Germany’s Peter Gojowczyk 5-7 6-1 5-7 6-2 6-0 on Sunday.

Alcaraz, who is 18 years and four months old, is eight days younger than Andre Agassi when the American reached the 1988 U.S. Open quarter-finals and semi-finals, according to U.S. Open stats.

The Spaniard is also the youngest to reach this stage in New York since Brazilian Thomaz Koch in 1963, five years before the sport turned professional, when the tournament was known as the U.S. Championships.

Gojowczyk, 14 years older than Alcaraz and playing in the fourth round of a major for the first time, made a bright start to edge the first set, but was hampered by an injury to his thigh and took a medical timeout midway through the fourth.

The German fought hard but faded badly as the match wore on, labouring behind the baseline as Alcaraz closed out the match with a bagel in the decider, sealing victory in three hours, 31 minutes when Gojowczyk sent a forehand sailing long.

Alcaraz smashed 35 winners and seven aces while winning 15 points at the net, feeding off the energy of the vocal crowd on Grandstand, while his opponent ended the match with a whopping 84 unforced errors.

Next up for the Spaniard is 12th-seeded Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime, who dispatched American Frances Tiafoe 4-66-2 7-6(6) 6-4.

Leylah Fernandez

Leylah Fernandez has had a great start to her career and the teenager has a big future ahead of her, former champion Angelique Kerber said on Sunday after losing 4-6 7-6(5) 6-2 to the Canadian at the U.S Open.

Fernandez, who turns 19 on Monday, knocked out defending champion Naomi Osaka in the third round and then reached a Grand Slam quarter-final for the first time with her win over the German.

Fernandez faces fifth seed Elina Svitolina in the quarter-finals.

Emma Raducanu 

British teenager Emma Raducanu extended her dream run at Flushing Meadows with a stunning 6-0 6-1 win over Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo to race into the U.S. Open last 16 on Saturday.

The 18-year-old Raducanu, who burst onto the scene earlier this year by reaching the fourth round at Wimbledon in her first Grand Slam appearance, was utterly dominant against Sorribes Tormo, closing out the one-sided match in 70 minutes.

Raducanu, who came to New York ranked 150th in the world, has breezed through all three of her matches without dropping a set and won a hugely impressive 79% of her first-serve points while smashing 23 winners past her hapless opponent.

The 24-year-old Sorribes Tormo, the world number 41, had no answer to the youngster’s combination of power, guile and court coverage, folding meekly and managing just five winners in the face of Raducanu’s relentless onslaught.

The only blemish for the Briton came when serving for the match as nerves got the better of her and she let a 30-0 lead slip to allow her opponent to get on the scoresheet before sealing the win on Sorribes Tormo’s serve in the next game.

Next up for Raducanu is a possible clash with top-seeded Australian Ash Barty, who faces American Shelby Rogers in the third round later on Saturday.

Felix Auger-Aliassime

Felix Auger-Aliassime broke through Frances Tiafoe’s defences to win 4-6 6-2 7-6(6) 6-4 at the U.S. Open on Sunday in a fourth-round battle between two of the sport’s brightest young talents.

Both players came into the tie at Arthur Ashe Stadium on the back of tough five-setters and it was 23-year-old Tiafoe who started the brighter, going up a break after the first game and shutting down all eight of the Canadian’s break point opportunities to go up 1-0.

Auger-Aliassime, 21, came roaring back in the second set, however, winning all but one of his first-serve points and making just four unforced errors to level the match.

Auger-Aliassime, seeded 12th, rocketed four aces in the ninth game of the third set and twice had a chance to close out the set in the 10th but American Tiafoe dug in his heels to hold serve and fire up his fans in the New York crowd.

Feeding off the energy, Tiafoe then went 3-1 up in a tiebreak but Auger-Aliassime battled back before clinching the final three points to close out the set.

Auger-Aliassime broke to kick off the fourth set and immediately fought off three break points to hold his own serve, going on to clinch the match with a forehand winner and reach his second consecutive Grand Slam quarter-final.

Tiafoe left the court to wild applause and his opponent praised his efforts.

Next up for Auger-Aliassime is 18-year-old Carlos Alcaraz, the youngest male player to reach the quarter-finals at Flushing Meadows in the Open era.

US Open 2021 Quarterfinals: Youngsters create history, enter Quarterfinals at US Open 

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(with Reuters inputs)

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