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Sebastian Korda subdues Carlos Alcaraz at Monaco

Mar 24, 2022; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Sebastian Korda (USA) hits a forehand against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (ESP) (not pictured) in a first round men's singles match in the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

American Sebastian Korda scored a big upset on Wednesday when he recorded a 7-6 (2), 6-7 (5), 6-3 victory over eighth-seeded Carlos Alcaraz of Spain in the second round of the Monte Carlo Masters at Monaco.

The 21-year-old Korda had 43 winners and overcame 54 unforced errors to win in just over three hours in windy conditions on the clay-court surface.

“It was nice to get the victory,” Korda said on-court after the match. “I stayed calm and believed in my returning. It was super tough, every time he threw up the ball it moved around. It was a crazy match.”

Alcaraz hit 24 winners and committed 36 unforced errors. The 18-year-old couldn’t keep his game on par with Korda in the final set.

“I’m a bit disappointed with myself,” Alcaraz said. “I had a lot of chances to be up in the match and (be) close to winning, but these losses sometimes are good to (have). You have to play matches.”

Korda will next face 10th-seeded American Taylor Fritz, who notched a 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 win over Marin Cilic of Croatia. Fritz had 25 winners and 21 unforced errors, while Cilic had 45 winners and 39 unforced errors.

Italy’s Lorenzo Musetti also pulled off an upset, beating sixth-seeded Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-2, 7-6 (2). Musetti had 20 winners against 17 unforced errors while Auger-Aliassime had 21 of each.

“My backhand down the line was a key to many of my great shots,” Musetti said afterward. “After a really good first set, he came back with such powerful serving, but I was calm and patient and that was the most beautiful thing about today.”

Musetti will next face 12th-seeded Diego Schwartzman of Argentina. Schwartzman registered a 6-0, 7-6 (4) win over Hungary’s Marton Fucsovics.

Also posting a stunning triumph was Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas, who beat seventh-seeded Brit Cameron Norrie 6-4, 2-6, 6-4. Ramos-Vinolas notched 37 winners against 30 unforced errors. Norrie had more errors (34) than winners (31).

Second-seeded Alexander Zverev of Germany advanced with a 6-1, 7-5 win over Federico Delbonis of Argentina. Zverev had a 19-to-6 edge in winners.

Fourth-seeded Norwegian Casper Ruud fought off Denmark qualifier Holger Rune 7-6 (5), 7-5, while fifth-seeded Russian Andrey Rublev rallied to defeat Australia’s Alex de Minaur 2-6, 6-1, 6-4.

Ninth-seeded Italian Jannik Sinner posted a 7-5, 6-3 victory over Finland qualifier Emil Ruusuvuori, 11th-seeded Hubert Hurkacz of Poland defeated Spain’s Pedro Martinez 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, and 13th-seeded Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta won 4-6, 7-6 (3), 4-3 when Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik retired.

Serbia’s Laslo Djere knocked off 16th-seeded Italian Lorenzo Sonego 6-4, 6-4, while Belgian wild card David Goffin was a 7-6 (5), 6-2 winner over Brit Daniel Evans.

–Field Level Media