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Carlos Alcaraz US Open 2021

‘It’s an absolute joke’ – Fellow pro slams criticism of Carlos Alcaraz

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Teen sensation Carlos Alcaraz has been unfairly criticised for his US open exit according to a prominent ATP star.

World number 24 Reilly Opelka is bemused by commentators who said Alcaraz showed weakness by retiring from his quarter-final clash with Felix Auger-Aliassime.

After battling through two five set epics in the previous two rounds, covering almost eight hours on-court, the 18-year-old cut his last eight encounter short in order to preserve his body and ensure his fitness.

Opelka defended the star for his actions, particularly responding to a tweet that labelled the match a ‘sudden surrender’ that was ‘very disappointing’ and ‘hope[fully] not a pattern for the 18-year-old’.

“The only thing that is a pattern here is the tennis media being absolute joke,” Opelka said in his Twitter address.

“Carlos [Alcaraz] is the youngest male player to reach a Grand Slam quarter-final in over 30 years. Yet somehow you manage to come up with this?”

While not the ideal ending to his brilliant US Open run, Alcaraz does not regret his decision to end the battle with Auger-Aliassime early.

“It’s really tough to end a great tournament like this. I had no choice to still play,” he said after the encounter.

“First of all I have to take care of my body to stay healthy. It’s a long match and I didn’t feel good to still play, so I had to retire.”

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Carlos Alcaraz US Open 2021
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