After improving game on game over the week, Carlos Alcaraz struggled in his European Open semi-final in Hamburg thanks to Alex Molcan, but once he got the Slovakian under control he fought his way to his fifth Season 7 final. -6(2) 6-1.
It was tough, obviously he played very well. The first set was really tight. I’m really happy to be able to finish the first set playing well Carlos Alcaraz
There, Lorenzo Musetti will provide the opposition, the Italian having ended the current eight-game winning streak of last week’s Bastad champion Francisco Cerundolos.
The 20-year-old’s 6-3 7-6(3) win over the Argentine earned him his first appearance in a Tour final unlike 19-year-old Alcaraz, who has yet to lose any of the four finals he has won. he has achieved this season.
The Spanish teenager, world number six, initially struggled to gain control in the opening set against Molcan and was broken on serve for the match at 5-3.
But he finally took control, finishing the set on his fifth set point in the tie-break, then running away with the second set for, as the top seed, his place in the final.
“It was tough,” Alcaraz said after the game. “Obviously he played very well. The first set was really tight. I’m really happy that I could finish the first set well playing.
“In the second set, I think he was a bit behind. He didn’t play well in the second set. I finished the match with a lot of confidence and played very well.
Alcaraz admitted he was matched by Molcan in the first set with his aggressive play.
“I couldn’t read the drop shots from him,” the youngster revealed. “He was better on the drop shots today, so I was a bit [frustrated] in the first set. »
A win against Musetti would put Alcaraz ahead of Rafa Nadal with the most titles won this season and put him 4th in the world rankings.
“Lorenzo is playing really well,” Alcaraz said ahead of Sunday’s title decider. “Of course he’s a great player. It’s going to be a great final. He played great games before the final. [I have] so, I have a lot of confidence for the final and I hope to make it six against six.
For Musetti to reach his first is a feat as he pointed out.
“It means a lot to me,” said the young Italian.
“It’s a surprise for me because I wasn’t playing my best tennis last week (in Bastad) so I didn’t expect to be in the final here.”
The world number 62 dominated the majority of his semi-final but missed a match point leading 5-4 in the second set when he missed with an underarm serve but regrouped well to overcome his Argentine opponent in form.
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