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Battle of Student & the Teacher: Carlos Alcaraz defeats Novak Djokovic to claim 1st Wimbledon Title

Photo: Julian Finney/Getty Images

The Men’s Wimbledon Single’s Championship was highly anticipated heading into the match already with two of the very best, No.1 ranked Spanish tennis player Carlos Alcaraz facing off against No.2 Serbian Novak Djokovic in a clash of the generations in what was one of the most riveting sporting finales we’ve ever seen in a battle between the Student and the Teacher.

Alcaraz, the student, bested the teacher in this instance by besting Djokovic in a 1-6, 7-6, 6-1, 3-6,6-4 five-set thriller for the ages in a startling comeback against whom many consider the greatest men's player of all time.

Both players were coming off dominant straight set wins, Alcaraz defeating the No.3 ranked Russian, Danii Medvedev, and Djokovic defeating No.8 ranked Italian, Jannick Sinner.

Djokovic, 36, is coming in to claim his 8th Wimbledon title, 24th Grand Slam in total, and his fourth consecutive (2019, 2021,2022) with 2020 being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On the other end, Alcaraz, a youthful 20 years of age, is looking to win his second career Grand Slam title and first Wimbledon trophy at the All England Club.

In the first set, Djokovic displayed his experience and mastery of the game on Alcaraz by dominating the first set 6-1 by scoring five consecutive points in the first set off an incredible array of crosscourt shots, off-balanced crossbody shots with impeccable body control as well as backhanders.

Albeit, Alcaraz did have the audacity to hit the ball between his legs backward and somehow almost landed it in bounce on one play that was implausible to witness.

There was one rally of 19 hits back and forth between the two tennis gods that saw both of them playing baseline to perfection with one seemingly not able to get the other off its course until Alcaraz finally hit a gorgeous straight baseline drive in Djokovic’s ad court (left side of the court) that gave him a 30-15 advantage in the second set with Djokovic up two games you can see starting at the 5:04 minute mark of the video above.

Alcaraz was more aggressive and more eased into the grand stage of the Wimbledon final in the second set as he had a beautiful backhand volley in one sequence that just didn’t seem like he should have been able to score by having to twist his body from an awkward angle with his back facing the net.

Both players at times slipped on the grass which benefited their contemporary such as one instance in the second set where Alcaraz was up 30-15 and as he hit a baseline drive, Djokovic was trying to run after it to return it but ultimately slipped in the process and gave Alcaraz a 40-15 advantage and eventually the game to take a 5-4 lead in the second set.

Alcaraz would eventually take the second set 7-6 after taking a 6-5 lead with Djokovic coming right back to tie it up 6-6 in the next game to cause a tiebreaker. However, Alcaraz responded with a miraculous shot in the tiebreaker game to win the set 7-6.

Alcaraz started to assert his dominance even more in the third set taking it 6-1 over Djokovic by taking back-to-back sets to take a 2-1 set lead.

Djokovic would set forth his brilliance once again in the fourth set taking it 6-4 to tie it at two apiece heading into the fifth and final set with the winner taking home the Wimbledon crown in what has been a battle for the ages already up to this point.

The final set started evenly matched as both players went at it with Alcaraz taking the first two of three games. In the fourth game, Alcaraz clinched off a two-handed backhand baseline hit that resulted in Djokovic smashing and breaking one of his tennis rackets he now trailed 3-1 in the final set.

Djokovic would make a little comeback, but Alcaraz evaporated any hope for his idol to try to make a miraculous comeback as he’s done numerous times throughout his illustrious career by being able to close out off a strong powerful hit that Djokovic failed to get above the net that was match point for the Spaniard prodigy.

Alcaraz quickly dropped to the ground exasperated and overwhelmed with emotions with the crowd elating with applause and cheers as the 20-year-old just defeated the man who’s had a stranglehold on Wimbledon four the past four championships.

The players met at center court and gave one another a hug and mutual respect in what was one of the greatest most competitive sporting events the world has ever witnessed that lasted over five hours.

Djokovic expressed high praise for Alcaraz who seems destined to lead the new generation, stating: “I haven’t played a player like him, ever”.

That’s a prodigious amount of praise coming from a 23-time Grand Slam champion who’s played some incredible players throughout his career such as Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal who are considered GOATs of the sport.

That might be a great deal of pressure, but if there’s anyone who’s proved to be worthy of the praise, it’s Alcaraz.

Alcaraz, 20, becomes the first player outside the "Big Four" of Djokovic, Federer, Nadal, and Andy Murray to win the tournament since 2002. He now has the No.1 spot on lock heading into the U.S. Open in New York City starting Aug 28. As he’s the defending champion after taking his first Grand Slam there last year.

If Alcaraz’s performance at Wimbledon was just a taste of what’s to come… The sports world is in for a treat.


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