The epic Wimbledon final between Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic is among the best three tennis matches Marion Bartoli has ever seen.

Former Wimbledon champion Bartoli watched in awe as Alcaraz dethroned Djokovic at the All England Club on Sunday, coming from behind to win a classic contest 1-6 7-6 (8-6) 6-1 3-6 6-4.

Bartoli played in two Wimbledon finals herself and was commentating on the latest instalment of great showpiece battles on Centre Court as Djokovic was denied a record-equalling eighth title at the grand slam tournament.

"I definitely ranked it in the top three matches that I've ever seen," Bartoli told Stats Perform.

"Of course there are some finals I haven't seen especially from before [this era], but I think when you look at it as Roger [Federer] against Rafa [Nadal] at Wimbledon 2008, and then Rafa against Novak at Australian Open 2012 and then this one, you will very much have the top three matches ever played. That's my personal opinion. 

"Maybe some people will add two or three other matches, but it is 100 per cent in the top five without a doubt, and I think I could even put it top three." 

Djokovic was frustrated as the Centre Court crowd rooted for his younger opponent for much of a back-and-forth encounter.

But Bartoli thinks the 20-year-old Spaniard would command support against any player.

She stressed that Wimbledon great Djokovic still gets plenty of backing, and much of the crowd reaction in favour of Alcaraz would have been based on not wanting the match to end quickly as the sport's latest blockbuster rivalry begins.

Alcaraz became the first player not called Djokovic, Federer, Nadal or Andy Murray to triumph at Wimbledon since 2002 – before he was even born – and the British crowd were relishing his success.

"It seemed like there was such an affection for Carlos Alcaraz," Bartoli said.

"In terms of Carlos, I don't know if it's because he's won so many matches and he doesn't lose or maybe the crowd is naturally against Novak, but for me I think it's more of an admiration for Carlos.

"From what I'm seeing from the crowd it is more like when you have this new genius that comes around, everyone wants to be part of the journey. I very much feel that with him. 

"And it's around the world – the welcoming that he had at the US Open last year, look at the shouting from the crowd again in that incredible match against Jannik Sinner when he was really on the ropes and Sinner was leading all the way and just couldn't finish it out at the end. 

"I think it's more when you're recognising that there is someone that good, it's almost impossible not to be for him, unless he's playing a local player. 

"That will be interesting to see if he plays the Brits next year. What sort of Centre Court is it going to be then? But if it's against anyone else then for sure they are going to be on his side.

"But even then I feel Novak has been really getting some great support as well and I think very much the crowd wanted to have a five-set match or a long run. 

"They didn't want it [to end quickly] when Carlos lost the first set easily and when Carlos won the second set then they didn't want Carlos to run away with the match either. 

"They really wanted both players to go out for battle all out for four hours and 45 minutes just like they did, so I don't think it's going to be one-sided always for Carlos Alcaraz. 

"But everyone very much feels like he is really the new genius and everyone wants to see him." 

The loss for Djokovic was the first time he had been beaten in a five-set grand slam final since losing to Murray in the 2012 US Open.

Despite that, Djokovic overtook Chris Evert (34) as the player with the most appearances in major finals, among both men and women (35).

Wimbledon is over for another year.

The British grand slam brought with it plenty of twists and turns, not least in the men's singles final on Sunday, as Carlos Alcaraz overcame Novak Djokovic in a five-set thriller.

A day before Alcaraz sealed his second major title with that 1-6 7-6 (8-6) 6-1 3-6 6-4 success, Marketa Vondrousova won her first grand slam with a surprise 6-4 6-4 victory over Ons Jabeur.

Using Opta data, Stats Perform looks back at the best statistics from the last two weeks at the All England Club.

King Carlos

It looked like it might be a bad day at the office for Alcaraz when Djokovic cruised to a 6-1 win in the first set on Centre Court, but the Spaniard came back with a bang.

Alcaraz is an incredible talent that looks set to take up the mantle left by Rafael Nadal, and while Djokovic was at times at his dominant best, it still wasn't enough to down the world number one.

At 20, Alcaraz is the third-youngest player in the Open Era to win the men's singles title at Wimbledon, after Boris Becker and Bjorn Borg.

And he is now the youngest player in the Open Era to win the singles title at both the US Open and Wimbledon.

Nadal was the only previous Spaniard to win the coveted trophy, as Alcaraz became the first player not called Nadal, Djokovic, Roger Federer or Andy Murray to triumph at the All England Club since 2002 - before he was even born.

He became the first player to defeat three top-10 opponents en route to winning the Wimbledon title since Pete Sampras did so in 1994, while after claiming the title at Queen's, Alcaraz is the second-youngest player to win 12+ consecutive grass-court matches (Boris Becker was the youngest to achieve the feat, with 13 straight wins in 1985 between the Queen's Club and Wimbledon).

No Grand Slam for Novak

Djokovic became the second player in the Open Era to reach multiple men's singles grand slam finals in a single year after turning 36, after Ken Rosewall in 1974. He also overtook Chris Evert (34) as the player with the most appearances in major finals, among both men and women (35).

Only Federer, with 46, can match the Serbian's tally of grand slam semi-final appearances in the Open Era, meanwhile.

The 36-year-old also became just the third player in the Open Era, after Federer and Jimmy Connors, to play in 100 men's singles matches at Wimbledon.

Djokovic had not lost a five-set grand slam final since losing to Andy Murray in the 2012 US Open.

Indeed, Djokovic had not lost at Wimbledon since going down to Tomas Berdych in the 2017 quarter-finals and the final was his first loss on Centre Court for 10 years, since Murray beat him in the famous 2013 final.

Vondrousova victorious

Vondrousova is the first unseeded player to win the women's singles title at Wimbledon in the Open Era. It marked only her second career WTA Tour title, following her success at Biel in 2017.

She is the lowest-ranked player to win the singles title in Wimbledon since the WTA Rankings were introduced.

The Czech was playing in her second grand slam final, having previously lost to Ashleigh Barty at the 2019 French Open.

Vondrousova now holds a record of 3-2 head-to-head against Jabeur, with the latter winning their only previous meeting on grass, at Eastbourne in 2021. All the Tunisian's losses Vondrousova have come in 2023.

Vondrousova is the sixth unseeded player to win a grand slam title in the last decade, after Jelena Ostapenko, Sloane Stephens, Iga Swiatek, Barbora Krejcikova and Emma Raducanu.

The 24-year-old is the third Czech woman to win the singles title at Wimbledon, after Jana Novotna (1998) and Petra Kvitova (2011, 2014).

Meanwhile, Jabeur became the first player since Simona Halep to lose each of her first three singles finals at grand slams, while the 28-year-old is the third player in the 21st century to lose successive Wimbledon finals after Venus Williams (2002, 2003) and Serena Williams (2018, 2019).

Carlos Alcaraz won his second grand slam before turning 21 with Sunday’s Wimbledon triumph.

Alcaraz is outstripping the achievements of runner-up Novak Djokovic and the rest of the modern ‘big three’ at the same age and here, the PA news agency looks at the statistics behind the Spaniard’s rapid rise to prominence.

Double delight

After winning last year’s US Open to become the youngest ever men’s world number one, and the first teenager to top the rankings, Alcaraz defeated Djokovic in five hard-fought sets at SW19 to double his grand slam tally.

The win means he has matched compatriot Rafael Nadal’s two majors before turning 21, while Djokovic won only the 2008 Australian Open and Roger Federer had not opened his account by that age.

Alcaraz will have two more chances before his 21st birthday, his US Open defence starting next month and then January’s Australian Open. Winning both would see him equal Mats Wilander’s Open era record of four slams before turning 21, while one success would match Bjorn Borg for second place on that list.

He has also spent 29 weeks at number one in the rankings in four separate spells, including his current four-week run – something neither Djokovic, Federer nor Nadal achieved before turning 21.

Lleyton Hewitt and Marat Safin are the only other under-21s to top the men’s rankings – Safin for just two weeks in 2000. Hewitt spent 61 weeks at number one before turning 21, with Alcaraz able to overhaul that record if he can retain his status for 32 of the 41 weeks before his next birthday.

Should he hold top spot at the end of the season and through the off-season, that will account for six weeks. However, he would almost certainly need to win the US Open where he is defending last year’s points and Djokovic, who missed out last year due to being unvaccinated against Covid-19, will be gaining points all the way.

Lost generation

Outside of the US Open, Alcaraz is remarkably the first man born after Djokovic to win any of the other three grand slams.

Since Safin’s 2005 Australian Open title, that competition has been won 10 times by Djokovic – born in May 1987 – with five wins for Federer, born in 1981, two for Nadal (1986) and one for Stan Wawrinka (1985).

Nadal has dominated the French Open with 14 wins, with three for Djokovic and one each for Federer and Wawrinka, while the Wimbledon titles had until Sunday been shared by Djokovic, Federer, Nadal and Andy Murray – a week older than Djokovic.

Juan Martin Del Potro and Marin Cilic, both born in 1988, Dominic Thiem (1993) and Daniil Medvedev (1996) have all won the US Open in addition to Alcaraz himself, the last three in successive years.

Alcaraz’s two majors and 29 weeks at number one compare to the four US Open titles and 16 weeks with Medvedev at number one for all male players born between himself and Djokovic. By contrast on the women’s side, players born in this period have won 33 grand slams and spent 458 weeks at world number one.

The narrative surrounding men’s tennis changed in the split second it took for Novak Djokovic’s final forehand to hit the Centre Court net and fall to the grass.

A season that looked set to see the Serbian smash the records he has not yet claimed – a first calendar Grand Slam, an unprecedented 25th major singles title – instead has been turned on its head thanks to the brilliance of 20-year-old Carlos Alcaraz.

By handing Djokovic his first Wimbledon defeat since 2017, Alcaraz has answered the one question that had been lingering – could he match and surpass the great Serbian on the biggest stage of all?


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In nearly five hours of spell-binding sporting theatre, the momentum fluctuated several times but in the end it was Alcaraz who seized his chance in a final game that demonstrated everything that makes the Spaniard such a special talent.

Wimbledon had seemed the least likely venue for him to topple Djokovic, such was the 36-year-old’s dominance and his young rival’s inexperience on grass, and, with his position as world number one strengthened, the era of Alcaraz may well be upon us.

“After this epic match, I think different about Novak in the way that probably in other tournaments, in other grand slams, I will remember this moment,” he said.

“I will think that, well, I’m ready to play five sets against him, good rallies, good sets, really long, long match and stay there physically, mentally, in tennis, in general. Probably it changes my mind a little bit after this match.”

Next month it will be Alcaraz who heads to New York as the defending US Open champion, while Djokovic has triumphed at Flushing Meadows just once in the last eight years.

There was no doubt this was a painful and unexpected loss for the Serbian, but also one that is likely to add fuel to the fire that burns so fiercely within him.

Asked if this could be the start of another great rivalry, Djokovic said with a smile: “I would hope so, for my sake. He’s going to be on the tour for quite some time. I don’t know how long I’ll be around.

“Let’s see. It’s been only three matches that we played against each other. Three really close matches. Two already this year in later stages of grand slams.

“I hope we get to play in US Open. I think it’s good for the sport,  one and two in the world facing each other in almost a five-hours, five-set thriller. Couldn’t be better for our sport in general.”

The bumper TV audience and the stars from well beyond sport packed into Centre Court were testament to that fact and, health permitting, there appears no limit to what Alcaraz could go on to achieve.

One of the most staggering things about the 20-year-old is how quickly he learns under the guidance of former world number one Juan Carlos Ferrero.

He had played just two tournaments on grass before arriving at Queen’s Club last month and almost lost his first match there to lucky loser Arthur Rinderknech.

He did not drop another set in taking the title and, only a few weeks after nerves caused him to cramp in the third set of his French Open semi-final against Djokovic, he proved superior over four hours and 42 minutes.

“I must say he surprised me,” said the Serbian. “He surprised everyone how quickly he adapted to grass this year. He hasn’t had too many wins on grass in the last two years that he played. Obviously him coming from clay, having the kind of style that he has.

“I think Queen’s helped him a lot. He was close to lose that first match in Queen’s. Then he started to gain momentum, more and more wins against really good players.

“I must say the slices, the chipping returns, the net play, it’s very impressive. I didn’t expect him to play so well this year on grass, but he’s proven that he’s the best player in the world, no doubt.

“He’s playing some fantastic tennis on different surfaces and he deserves to be where he is.”

Both men will now take a well-earned break before reconvening on the north American hard courts in August when Alcaraz, not Djokovic, will be the man to beat.

The Russians returned, a Ukrainian charmed Centre Court, an American punched above his weight, there were protests, curfews, boos and even a spying controversy. But most unusually of all, Novak Djokovic did not win.

He came close, though. Wimbledon 2023 looked set to go the same way as the previous four in the men’s draw, Djokovic bidding to take his number of titles to eight – level with Roger Federer – and his total of grand slam wins to 24 to equal Margaret Court’s all-time record.

But along came Carlos Alcaraz, the swashbuckling 20-year-old bundle of Spanish energy, a smiling assassin, and suddenly the irresistible force had beaten the immovable object.

Djokovic was supposed to stroll to the title, a testament to his enduring greatness, but also a damning indictment of the rest of the field if a 36-year-old can knock them all over with ease.

But Alcaraz struck a blow for the young pretenders with a five-set victory over four-and-three-quarter dramatic hours, in what was only his 18th match on grass.

Alcaraz had earlier in the week shrugged off ‘spygate’ claims that his father had been seen filming Djokovic practising with all his wide-eyed, boyish charm, simply saying: “Oh, probably it is true. My father is a huge fan of tennis.”

The breakout star of the Championships was American Chris Eubanks, who landed some heavyweight shots on his run to the quarter-finals, knocking out British number one Cameron Norrie and fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas along the way.

Wild card Liam Broady flew the British flag the furthest in the men’s draw, accounting for fourth seed – and renowned grass-phobe – Casper Ruud before falling to Dennis Shapovalov in round three.

The women’s champion was not so easy to pick, as has been the case for the last few years, and although a ‘big three’ has started to emerge, both world number one Iga Swiatek and defending champion Elena Rybakina exited at the quarter-final stage, and second seed Aryna Sabalenka in the semis.

Unseeded Ukrainian Elina Svitolina became the darling of Centre Court, reaching the semi-finals just nine months after her daughter Skai was born.

Svitolina’s stance in not shaking hands with players from Russia or Belarus, who were banned last year due to the conflict in her homeland, led to fourth-round opponent Victoria Azarenka being booed off Centre Court, with spectators assuming it was her who had snubbed the handshake.

The Wimbledon crowd evidently know more about Pimm’s and strawberries than they do about the world political landscape.

Sabalenka’s loss to Ons Jabeur – and Daniil Medvedev’s defeat by Alcaraz in the men’s semi – did at least spare the All England Club from the awkward optic of the Princess of Wales handing over the trophy to a Belarusian or Russian player.

Svitolina beat Swiatek in the last eight but her run was ended by Czech Marketa Vondrousova, the world number 42, who went on to become the first unseeded woman to win the title after a straight-sets demolition of Jabeur.

British number one Katie Boulter, unfazed by Just Stop Oil’s bizarre orange confetti/jigsaw puzzle interruption – the second such protest on day three – made the third round but was brutally taken down by Rybakina, 6-1 6-1.

The rain, frustratingly a feature throughout the fortnight, meant only an hour’s play was possible on the outside courts on day two, causing a backlog of matches and a headache for the schedulers.

That did not affect the show courts, but Wimbledon’s stubborn insistence that play should not start before 1.30pm on Centre meant too many late finishes and, on two occasions, matches being unable to finish due to the strict 11pm curfew.

Djokovic disposed of Stan Wawrinka with 14 minutes to spare, but not even he could beat Hubert Hurkacz inside their allotted two hours after two lengthy matches beforehand, and the Serbian had to come back in on his day off to finish the job.

The same happened to Andy Murray, the latest leg of his extended farewell tour ending in the second round when he was outlasted over five sets and two days by Tsitsipas.

Djokovic suggested play should start at 12pm, but that is another contest at Wimbledon that he probably will not win.

Wimbledon is over for another year and as usual it was an eventful fortnight.

There is a new king of Centre Court after Carlos Alcaraz dethroned Novak Djokovic while history was made in the women’s final as unseeded Marketa Vondrousova won.

Here, the PA news agency picks out five things we learned at the championships.

Djokovic proves mortal as Alcaraz reigns

There was a men’s final for the ages as long-time ruler Novak Djokovic, who had gone 10 years unbeaten on Centre Court, came up against the heir to the throne in the shape of Carlos Alcaraz.

Well, the Spaniard proved that he is ready to take the crown now as he won a near-five-hour final in five sets to claim a first Wimbledon title and deny his opponent a record-equalling eighth.

This is the start of a rivalry that will last as long as Djokovic carries on playing and it is fascinating to see how the 36-year-old reacts to his first SW19 defeat since 2017.

Wimbledon welcomes back Russian and Belarusian players

Russian and Belarusian players returned to Wimbledon following last year’s ban due to the invasion of Ukraine and were generally well received.

Men’s world number three Daniil Medvedev and women’s world number two Aryna Sabalenka made up for lost time by each reaching the semi-finals.

While political tensions remained relatively muted, there was a flash point when Victoria Azarenka of Belarus was jeered off court following her fourth-round defeat by Ukrainian Elina Svitolina.

Azarenka, who put up her hand to acknowledge Svitolina knowing her opponent did not wish to shake hands with a player from the aggressor countries, branded fans “drunk” and unfair.

Curfew causes issues

The All England Club’s insistence on beginning Centre Court matches at 1.30pm remains a source of frustration for some.

Djokovic led calls to overhaul the scheduling after his match with Hubert Hurkacz had to be suspended overnight due to the council-imposed 11pm curfew, while Andy Murray’s clash with Stefanos Tsitsipas was also impacted.

Despite objections, Wimbledon chief executive Sally Bolton offered no guarantees that earlier starts will be considered for next year’s tournament.

Beginning matches later makes the final contest of the day a prime-time occasion on BBC television and it appears that is now the goal, with Bolton reporting record viewing figures.

Britons fail to shine on big stage

Question marks hang over the state of British tennis after home interest in the adult singles draws was wiped out before the end of week one.

Women’s number one Katie Boulter was the last Briton standing but her hopes were emphatically ended by a thumping third-round defeat to defending champion Elena Rybakina on day six.

Two-time winner Murray, men’s number one Cameron Norrie and Liam Broady had all crashed out the previous day, while the raft of wild cards failed to produce a surprise package.

On a more positive note, 2021 US Open champion Emma Raducanu and potential star Jack Draper should soon return after missing the Championships through injury while 17-year-old Henry Searle became the first British boys’ singles champion at Wimbledon since 1962 and 14-year-old Mark Ceban won the boys’ under-14 event.

‘Big three’ dominance broken

For the first time since Ashleigh Barty won the 2022 Australian Open and subsequently retired, there was a grand slam champion from outside the so-called ‘big three’ of the women’s game.

Three-time major winner Iga Swiatek has been the dominant force post-Barty, while Sabalenka and Rybakina have each won one of the leading tournaments in that time.

But Sabalenka’s semi-final exit to Ons Jabeur, which prevented her from replacing Swiatek as world number one, signalled an end to the trio’s stranglehold on the slams.

World number 42 Vondrousova was the surprise new name on the trophy, becoming the first unseeded player to win the women’s tournament in her first significant grand slam run since she lost the 2019 French Open to Barty as a teenager.

Wimbledon threw up a historic surprise in the women’s singles before Novak Djokovic’s long reign in the men’s tournament came to an end.

Czech world number 42 Marketa Vondrousova beat crowd favourite Ons Jabeur to become the first unseeded women’s champion in the competition’s history.

And a day later Carlos Alcaraz became the new King of Centre Court when he dethroned Novak Djokovic in a five-set thriller.

Here, the PA news agency looks back at the 2023 Championships.

Unseeded and undefeated

Vondrousova spent last year’s Wimbledon in a cast and her SW19 experience was just to watch best friend Miriam Kolodziejova in qualifying. She ended the 2023 edition as the first unseeded women’s champion in the event’s history.

The Olympic silver medallist beat four seeds to reach the semi-finals, where she ended the emotional run of Ukrainian wild card Elina Svitolina.

She was the underdog once more in the final against last year’s runner-up Ons Jabeur, but overcame early nerves to win in straight sets and lift the Venus Rosewater Dish.

The future is now

Djokovic had not lost at Wimbledon since 2017 and had not been defeated on Centre Court since Andy Murray beat him in the 2013 final. Enter Alcaraz.

The Spanish world number one overcame a wobbly first set to beat the seven-time champion in five epic sets.

The calendar Grand Slam continues to elude Djokovic, but he will still be heavily backed to win another major title in his career and match Margaret Court’s record of 24.

But Alcaraz’s progress on grass means the odds of equalling Roger Federer’s eight titles in SW19 will have lengthened.

Tweet of the tournamentPicture of the tournamentBrit watch

British interest in the adult singles competitions ended in the first week, with Liam Broady and Katie Boulter both losing in the third round.

Andy Murray’s hopes of a long run were ended by fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas in the second round, while Cameron Norrie – who reached the semi-finals a year ago – also exited at the same stage to exciting American Chris Eubanks.

But it was not all doom and gloom for the host nation.

Wolverhampton’s Henry Searle won the boys’ singles final – the first British boy to do so since Stanley Matthews in 1961 – Liverpudlian Neal Skupski was victorious in the men’s doubles title with his Dutch partner Wesley Koolhof and Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid lifted the men’s wheelchair doubles title.

Russia and Belarus return

After being banned from the 2022 edition due to the war in Ukraine, players from Russia and Belarus returned this summer.

Generally, they were well received by the crowds but organisers would likely have breathed a sigh of relief when Aryna Sabalenka and Daniil Medvedev both fell at the semi-final stage, avoiding the possibility of the Princess of Wales presenting the trophy to a Belarusian or Russian player.

The only controversy came when Victoria Azarenka of Belarus was booed off court following her fourth-round defeat by Ukrainian Svitolina.

Azarenka, who put up her hand to acknowledge Svitolina knowing her opponent did not wish to shake hands with a player from the aggressor countries, branded fans “drunk” and unfair.

Quote of the tournamentShot of the tournamentStat of the tournament

Carlos Alcaraz celebrated a generational shift in tennis after dethroning Novak Djokovic in one of the great Wimbledon finals.

The young Spaniard looked to be on his way to victory when he recovered from a nervous start to take a two-sets-to-one lead only for Djokovic to show once again his remarkable powers of resilience.

It was he who appeared in the ascendancy at the start of the fifth set but back came 20-year-old Alcaraz to claim a 1-6 7-6 (6) 6-1 3-6 6-4 victory after four hours and 42 minutes, finally landing a meaningful blow for the young guns against the man 16 years his senior.

Alcaraz was not even born when Lleyton Hewitt in 2002 became the last man apart from Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray or Djokovic to win the title here, and he is the youngest men’s champion since Boris Becker in 1986.

Alcaraz won his maiden slam title at the US Open last summer but, having beaten Casper Ruud on that occasion with Djokovic barred from entering the country, there is no question this is a far bigger, and potentially seismic, moment in the men’s game.

“I did it for myself, not for the tennis generation,” said Alcaraz. “(But) beating Novak at his best, in this stage, making history, being the guy to beat him after 10 years unbeaten on that court, is amazing for me.

“It’s something that I will never forget. It’s great for the new generation, as well, I think, to see me beating him and making them think that they are capable to do it as well.

“It’s the happiest moment of my life. I think it’s not going to change for a long time. Beating Novak, winning the Wimbledon championship, is something that I dream about since I started playing tennis.”

The defeat prevented Djokovic tying Federer with an eighth Wimbledon title, while it also ended his chances of winning the calendar Grand Slam this year and possibly forever, although he will surely have more opportunities to equal Margaret Court’s all-time record of 24 slam crowns.

This was the hottest ticket in town. Along with the Prince and Princess of Wales, Prince George and Princess Charlotte and King Felipe VI of Spain, Hollywood stars Brad Pitt, Hugh Jackman and Daniel Craig were attendance while, among the tennis ranks, sat in the stands with new men’s doubles champion Neal Skupski, was Murray.

The Scot was the last man to beat Djokovic on this court, 10 years and 46 matches ago, in that unforgettable final.

The excitement that fizzed around the arena threatened to evaporate as Djokovic pounced on Alcaraz, winning the first five games then the opening set in only 34 minutes.

Djokovic had two main regrets after the match, the biggest one being that he was not able to extend his record of consecutive slam tie-breaks won to 16.

He led 3-0 and had a set point at 6-5 only to net two routine backhands and then see an Alcaraz return fly past him.

In their first slam meeting in the semi-finals of the French Open last month, Alcaraz had been stricken by cramp after a similar first two sets, but here he looked far the better physically as he swept to the third set, breaking Djokovic for a second time in a 26-minute game comprising 13 deuces and seven break points.

But Djokovic is the master at rousing himself when he appears down and out and so it proved again.

The four-time defending champion had the momentum going into the decider but netted a high volley on break point at 1-0 and then hurled his racket against the net post in anger, smashing the frame, after Alcaraz broke in the next game.

Djokovic did all he could to apply pressure as the young Spaniard, who has extended his lead as world number one, stepped up to serve it out but Alcaraz showed what a truly special talent he is by pulling off a precision lob and a reflex volley before slumping to the grass when his opponent finally netted.

“Probably before this match I thought that I wasn’t ready to beat Djokovic in five sets, an epic match like this,” said Alcaraz. “I stayed good physically and good mentally about five hours against a legend.”

On learning from what happened in Paris, he added: “I am a totally different player than French Open. I grew up a lot since that moment. I learned a lot from that moment.”

Djokovic handled the defeat with impressive grace but broke down in tears when he saw his eight-year-old son Stefan applauding from the stands.

He admitted Alcaraz’s remarkably quick progression on grass had taken him by surprise and thought back to the close finals where he has come out on the other side.

“I’ve won some epic finals that I was very close to losing,” he said. “Maybe this is kind of a fair-and-square deal, I guess, to lose a match like this for me here. Even though it hurts.

“Credit to Carlos. Amazing poise in the important moments. For someone of his age to handle the nerves like this, be playing attacking tennis, and to close out the match the way he did. I thought I returned very well that last game, but he was just coming up with some amazing, amazing shots.

“Some regrets. I had my chances. I think I could have closed out that second-set tie-breaker better. But credit to him for fighting and showing some incredible defensive skills, passing shots that got him the break in the fifth. He was a deserved winner today.”

Alcaraz has a long way to go if he is to have anything like the careers that Djokovic and his long-time rivals Federer and Nadal have put together.

But the Serbian could not be more impressed with the 20-year-old as an all-round package, saying: “I think people have been talking in the past 12 months or so about his game consisting of certain elements from Roger, Rafa and myself.

“I would agree with that. I think he’s got basically the best of all three worlds. He’s got this Spanish bull mentality of competitiveness and fighting spirit and incredible defence.

“I haven’t played a player like him ever, to be honest. Roger and Rafa have their own strengths and weaknesses. Carlos is a very complete player. Amazing adapting capabilities that I think are a key for longevity and for a successful career on all surfaces.”

Alcaraz, still wearing his lucky bucket hat, burst into a wide grin when told what Djokovic had said.

“It’s crazy that Novak said that, honestly,” he said. “I don’t know. Probably he’s right. But I don’t want to think about it. I’m going to think that I’m full Carlos Alcaraz.”

Carlos Alcaraz was the toast of world sport after his stunning victory over Novak Djokovic handed him the Wimbledon men’s singles title for the first time at the age of just 20.

The Spaniard triumphed in a five-set epic to deny the Serbian a 24th grand slam title after a 1-6 7-6 (6) 6-1 3-6 6-4 arm wrestle on Centre Court.

His heroics prompted praise from the tennis glitterati and beyond as they took to social media after a thriller at SW19.

Compatriot Rafael Nadal, who has 22 grand slam titles to his name, tweeted: “Congratulations @carlosalcaraz. You have given us immense joy today and I am sure that our pioneer in Spanish tennis, Manolo Santana, has also been cheering wherever he is, such as Wimbledon whom you have joined today.

“A very strong hug and enjoy the moment, champion!!!”

Last year’s beaten finalist Nick Kyrgios, who was a late withdrawal this year because of injury, added: “Haven’t watched a whole tennis match in a long time haha. Thank you @DjokerNole and @carlosalcaraz for putting on that incredible performance. Congratulations to you both.”

There was praise two from the organisers of the other three slam tournaments.

A series of posts on the US Open’s official Twitter account said: “What a match”, “That match was everything we hoped for” and “Can this rivalry continue on for a few more years, please?”, while Roland-Garros described the victory as “Prince of Wimbledon” and the Australian Open said simply, “Unstoppable”.

Alcaraz was presented with the trophy by the Princess of Wales, who watched from the Royal Box with Prince William and their children Prince George and Princess Charlotte as well as Spain’s King Felipe VI, and a message on their Twitter acount said: “What a match! Congratulations @carlosalcaraz.”

There were celebrations at Spain’s UK Embassy as officials also took to Twitter, saying: “Unbelievable, amazing, superb, fantastic… What a match, what a champion. Carlos Alcaraz wins his first #Wimbledon title, but certainly not the last.”

The young Spaniard’s triumph also impressed current and former athletes outside his sport with Spain’s former Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea leading the tributes.

De Gea wrote: “Absolutely crazy @carlosalcaraz”, while Roma frontman Paulo Dybala said: “What a game we just saw @carlosalcaraz @DjokerNole! Congrats to both for the great final @Wimbledon!”

There was also a message from Real Madrid, the club the Murcia-born star supports.

It said: “Congratulations on your brilliant victory at @Wimbledon, @carlosalcaraz. And congratulations on maintaining top spot in the world tennis rankings. You are a source of pride for Spanish sport and all of the madridistas.”

Former Barcelona striker Gary Lineker put his Spanish to good use, with his tweet translating as: “Spectacular! What a game! What a player. What a champion. Congratulations to @carlosalcaraz. Magnificent.”

Retired cricketing superstar Sachin Tendulkar was equally effusive in his praise.

Tendulkar said: “What a fantastic final to watch! Excellent tennis by both these athletes! We’re witnessing the rise of the next superstar of tennis. I’ll be following Carlos’ career for the next 10-12 years just like I did with @Rogerfederer.

“Many congratulations @carlosalcaraz!”

There was recognition for Hollywood royalty too in the shape of Ben Stiller, who tweeted: “Congrats to @carlosalcaraz. What an incredible final.”

Carlos Alcaraz dethroned Novak Djokovic on Centre Court as the curtain closed on Wimbledon with a men’s final for the ages.

There was more British joy as Henry Searle won the boys’ singles crown but there was disappointment for Alfie Hewett as he again missed out on the wheelchair singles crown.

Here, the PA news agency takes a look at day 14 of the Championships.

Alcaraz ends Djokovic reign

Carlos Alcaraz will go down in history as the man who finally beat Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon.

The Serbian had not lost since 2017 and his invincibility stretched back even further on Centre Court, with Andy Murray the last man to inflict defeat on him there way back in 2013.

But Alcaraz proved he is the real deal and ended Djokovic’s reign in a men’s singles final that will go down as one of the greatest.

There were twists and turns, drama, frustration and most of all some epic tennis in a near five-hour battle that Alcaraz won 1-6 7-6 (6) 6-1 3-6 6-4.

He claimed his first SW19 crown and second grand slam title overall and it will be fascinating to see how much of a seminal moment this victory is.

Tweet of the dayQuote of the dayPicture of the dayHewett’s heartache

Alfie Hewett’s wait for grand slam perfection goes on after he lost the wheelchair singles final.

The Briton has won at the Australian Open, the French Open and US Open but his home slam at Wimbledon continues to evade him after a second successive final loss.

Number one seed Tokito Oda, who is just 17, denied him glory on Court One with a 6-4 6-2 victory as he won back-to-back grand slams following his recent success at the French Open.

Hewett was visibly devastated at the end and Oda could be an obstacle for some time, having become the youngest champion at Wimbledon since Martina Hingis.

Searle ends British drought

Henry Searle became the first British boys’ singles champion at Wimbledon since 1962.

The 17-year-old from Wolverhampton beat fifth seed Yaroslav Demin 6-4 6-4 on Court One to emulate Stanley Matthews, son of the famous footballer, who triumphed 61 years ago.

He is Britain’s first junior champion since Laura Robson won the girls’ event in 2008 and ensured more home success at this year’s tournament after Neal Skupski won the men’s doubles on Saturday.

It will be a life-changing experience for Searle but he looks like he has the temperament and the ability to succeed in the men’s game after a brilliant campaign where he did not drop a set, highlighted by him sending down a 134mph serve during the final.

Stat of the day

Carlos Alcaraz was crowned the new king of Wimbledon after dethroning Novak Djokovic on a rapt Centre Court in one of the great grand slam finals.

The young Spaniard looked to be on his way to victory when he recovered from a nervous start to take a two-sets-to-one lead only for Djokovic to show once again his remarkable powers of resilience.

It was he who appeared in the ascendancy at the start of the fifth set but back came 20-year-old Alcaraz to claim a 1-6 7-6 (6) 6-1 3-6 6-4 victory after four hours and 42 minutes, finally landing a meaningful blow for the young guns against the man 16 years his senior.

Alcaraz slumped to the court after Djokovic’s final forehand dropped into the net before sharing a long embrace with the vanquished Serbian.

Novak Djokovic is going for his eighth Wimbledon title and Carlos Alcaraz his first in a final billed as the ultimate generation game.

Djokovic, 36, is bidding to become the oldest man to take the SW19 crown while 20-year-old Alcaraz is the youngest finalist since fellow Spaniard Rafael Nadal in 2006.

The winner will also claim the world number one spot.

Elsewhere, there is British interest in the juniors competition, with Henry Searle reaching the final of the boys’ singles, while Alfie Hewett looks to finally win an elusive wheelchair singles title in SW19.

Here, the PA news agency looks ahead to the final day of the Championships.

Will it be Novak the gr-eight?

Djokovic is making history with virtually every victory and a 6-3 6-4 7-6 (4) win over Jannik Sinner in his record-equalling 46th grand slam semi-final earned him a record-breaking 35th final, taking him past American great Chris Evert.

The Serbian is now only one victory away from matching Roger Federer by winning an eighth Wimbledon title, and Federer and Bjorn Borg by claiming five in a row.

He would also move level with Margaret Court with a record 24th grand slam crown.

It is 10 years since Djokovic lost a match on Centre Court, an extraordinary run of 45 matches going back to the 2013 final against Andy Murray.

Or king Carlos the first?

Standing in Djokovic’s way is swashbuckling Spaniard Alcaraz in what will, incredibly, be only the 18th match of his career on grass.

The world number one proved he has got the hang of the surface by winning at Queen’s Club last month and he dismantled third seed Daniil Medvedev in three sets in their semi-final.

Alcaraz already has a grand slam title to his name having won last year’s US Open, and he reached the semi-finals at Roland Garros.

There he was beaten by Djokovic, but only after cramping up following two evenly-contested sets.

Next stop, Searle’s court

Wolverhampton’s Searle is one match away from becoming Britain’s first boys’ singles champion at Wimbledon for 61 years.

The 17-year-old defeated American fourth seed Cooper Williams 7-6 (4) 6-3 in the semi-finals on Saturday.

Backed by his noisy fan club consisting of family members and friends from his tennis club, Searle is on the brink of emulating Stanley Matthews, son of the famous footballer, who triumphed in 1962.

Jack Draper was the last British player to make the final five years ago, while Liam Broady also reached it in 2011, but both were beaten.

Searle will face 17-year-old Yaroslav Demin of Russia in the final.

There is also British interest in the junior doubles after Hannah Klugman and Isabelle Lacy reached the final, while Alfie Hewett goes for his maiden wheelchair singles title against world number one Tokito Oda of Japan.

Order of play

Centre Court (from 2pm)
Carlos Alcaraz v Novak Djokovic
Storm Hunter/Elise Mertens v Hsieh Su-wei/Barbora Strycova

Court One (from 11am)
Alfie Hewett v Tokito Oda
Henry Searle v Yaroslav Demin
Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan v James Blake/Lleyton Hewitt


Sunny changing to cloudy by late morning.

Carlos Alcaraz says the blockbuster Wimbledon final against Novak Djokovic is going to be the “best moment of my life”.

The world number one is gunning for his first title in SW19 but is coming up against the toughest test of all in Djokovic, who has eyes on a record-equalling eighth success on Centre Court.

A 16-year age gap between the two players makes Sunday the ultimate generation game as Alcaraz looks to dethrone 36-year-old Djokovic.

And the Spaniard, who disposed of third seed Daniil Medvedev, is going to cherish the moment.

“It is probably going to be the best moment of my life – probably,” he said. “Playing a final here in Wimbledon is something that I dream about when I start playing tennis. As I said before, it’s even better playing against Novak.

“It’s going to be a really emotional moment for me. But I’ll try to stay calm in that moment. For Novak it is one more day, one more moment. For me, it’s going to be the best moment of my life I think.”

It is a rematch of the recent French Open semi-final where Alcaraz played brilliantly to level at one set all before cramp ruined his chances and Djokovic raced to a four-set win on his way to a record 23rd grand slam title.

Alcaraz, chasing his second after winning last year’s US Open, has vowed to do things differently in his preparation.

“I will try to get into the court with not as much nerves as I probably had in French Open, in the semi-final,” he said. “I will try to pull out all the nerves, try to enjoy that moment because probably in the semi-final at the French Open I didn’t enjoy at all in the first set.

“I’ll do something different. I’ll prepare the match a little bit different from the French Open. It’s going to be different for me. I hope not to get cramp during the final.

“I think I’ll be better on Sunday.”

Playing in the final is not a new thing for Djokovic as he aims to join Roger Federer on eight titles and notch a fifth in a row.


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“It’s an ultimate showdown,” said Djokovic, who has not lost on Centre Court since 2013. “Everything comes down to one match.

“All eyes of the tennis and sports world will be directed on this Sunday’s Wimbledon’s final. It’s probably the most watched tennis match globally. I look forward to it.

“I obviously have more experience than most of these guys that I faced here, and that I will face on Sunday, as well.

“Experience could help a little bit I think maybe in some important moments, beginning the match, managing the nerves, managing the occasion, circumstances. Yeah, that’s where experience could play a role.

“But it’s not going to be the deciding factor really. So whoever on a given day is in a better state, I mean, mentally and physically, will be the winner.”

Novak Djokovic is looking forward to a “feast” of a Wimbledon final against Carlos Alcaraz after overcoming spats with the umpire and the crowd in a straight-sets victory over Jannik Sinner.

The end of the fortnight will see the contest that was widely predicted at the start, with the world’s two best players fighting it out for the trophy.

Djokovic is making history with virtually every victory and a 6-3 6-4 7-6 (4) win against Sinner in his record-equalling 46th grand slam semi-final earned him a record-breaking 35th final, taking him past American great Chris Evert.

Alcaraz, who blitzed third seed Daniil Medvedev, is the only man who can now prevent Djokovic matching Roger Federer by winning an eighth Wimbledon title and Margaret Court with a 24th grand slam crown.


A month ago at the French Open, Djokovic and Alcaraz clashed in a semi-final that hit the heights for two split sets before the young Spaniard was struck down by cramp.

“Judging by the performances that we have seen from all the players, I think this is probably the best final that we could have,” said Djokovic. “We are both in good form. We’re both playing well.

“I want to take this title without a doubt. I look forward to it. It’s going to be a great challenge, the greatest challenge that I could have at the moment from any angle really: physical, mental, emotional.

“He’s one of the quickest guys on the tour. He can do pretty much anything on the court. I consider myself also a very complete player.

“We had a very good match until he started struggling physically in Paris. I think we really took the level of tennis very high. I think it was great for the audience and great for us players to be part of that.

“Obviously completely different conditions here. I do have more experience playing in many more grand slam or Wimbledon finals than him. Still, he’s in great shape. He’s very motivated. He’s young. He’s hungry. I’m hungry, too, so let’s have a feast.”

While on paper it appeared a comfortable win for Djokovic against Sinner, there were moments of real tension, particularly when he saved two set points at 4-5 in the third set and before that in the fourth game of the second, when he was penalised for a hindrance by British umpire Richard Haigh.

At 15-15, Djokovic suddenly let out a loud and late grunt after hitting a backhand down the line that he probably expected to be a winner only for Sinner to reach it.

It is unusual for a grunt to elicit a hindrance ruling and Djokovic reacted with disbelief, saying to Haigh: “You must be joking. Calling that in the semi-final of Wimbledon? What are you doing?”

To compound the situation, Haigh then gave Djokovic a time violation in the same game for taking too long on his serve.

“I have to accept the decision from a chair umpire,” said the 36-year-old later. “I’ve never had a hindrance call for an extended grunt. I saw the replay. I saw that my grunt finished before he hit the shot. So I thought that chair umpire’s call was not correct.

“I was just trying to hold my things mentally together and not really get upset, even though I was really upset because I didn’t think it was the right call.”

The crowd were willing Sinner to make a contest of it and sensed the moment had come when the 21-year-old Italian created two set points in the third.

Djokovic clapped sarcastically and gave a thumbs up when noise delayed his second serve, with a man shouting ‘Vamos Rafa’, and was then booed for taunting the crowd when Sinner missed both chances.

When Djokovic held serve, he turned to the fans closest to him and mimed crying.

It is far from the first time the second seed has expressed annoyance with crowds cheering against him but, asked about it in his press conference, he said only with a smile: “It’s all love. All love and acceptance.”

Sinner and Djokovic had met in the quarter-finals here last year, when the Italian opened up a two-set lead only for his opponent to win in five.

Sinner certainly had his chances in this one but was unable to take any of the six break points he created, while 20 unforced errors on his powerful forehand, often at important moments, rather told the story.

Djokovic took his only chance in the first set and it was not until Sinner fought back from 0-40 to hold serve in the third game of the third set that he was really able to apply any consistent pressure.

He made errors on both of his set points, though, and then squandered a 3-1 lead in the tie-break with a double fault and more mistakes – Djokovic’s winning tie-break streak at grand slams now stands at 15.

Sinner was left to rue his missed chances, saying: “Regardless of the score, I felt like I was more close this year than last year.

“I’m trying to play in these situations more often. I felt like I was ready. I went with the right mentality on the court. I had a belief to win this match. I felt like my level was good. It was just, especially in the pressure points, I messed it up a little bit.”

Carlos Alcaraz walked out of Centre Court and into a spying controversy after reaching the Wimbledon semi-finals for the first time.

The world number one beat fellow 20-year-old Holger Rune in straight sets to reach the last four.

He then had to respond to reports his father Carlos, a regular member of his entourage, recorded Novak Djokovic – who he is seeded to meet in the final – while the seven-time champion was training at Wimbledon’s Aorangi Park.

“Oh, probably it is true. My father is a huge fan of tennis. He doesn’t only watch my matches,” said Alcaraz.

“I think he gets into the club at 11am, gets out at 10pm, watching matches, watching practice from everyone.

“Being able to watch Djokovic in real life, yeah, probably it is true he’s filmed the sessions.”

Pressed on whether having the video footage would give him a competitive advantage, Alcaraz said: “I don’t think so.

“I mean, I have a lot of videos from Djokovic on every platform. I think it’s not an advantage for me.”

Alcaraz did not need any inside information to beat Rune 7-6 (3) 6-4 6-4.

The Spaniard and sixth seed Rune grew up playing against each other and teamed up for a doubles tournament when they were 14.

On Wednesday they became the first men under 21 to face each other in a Wimbledon quarter-final in the open era.

Just six days separate the pair – Rune being the older – and as they headed into a first-set tie-break there was virtually nothing to choose between them either.

Alcaraz had hit 12 winners to Rune’s 13, both had made 12 unforced errors and both had won a total of 38 points.

Both had also double-faulted once, but Rune picked the wrong time to add to that particular tally to hand Alcaraz the advantage in the tie-break, which he went on to win with a stunning backhand return.

They exchanged further blows until 4-4 in the second set when Rune netted a simple overhead, and Alcaraz punished a second serve with another pin-point return to secure the first break of the match.

With England captain Ben Stokes watching in the crowd, it was Rune’s title hopes that were turning to ashes.

The weary Dane was given a warning for a time violation and was promptly broken for 3-2 in the third.

Rune saved a match point on his own serve but could not get near Alcaraz’s as the top seed wrapped up victory in two hours and 20 minutes.

Alcaraz, still a relative grass-court rookie despite his win at Queen’s Club a fortnight ago, said: “Honestly it’s amazing for me, a dream since I started playing tennis, making good results at Wimbledon, such a beautiful tournament.

Alcaraz will play Russian third seed Daniil Medvedev, who beat him in the second round two years ago when he really was a novice on grass, in the semi-final.

“We played two times, once here at Wimbledon,” added Alcaraz. “It’s going to be a tough one.

“But right now I’m going to enjoy this moment. You don’t play a semi-final every year.”

Rune looked frazzled in the final two sets and he revealed he did not feel 100 per cent.

“This morning I didn’t feel very good when I woke up. But, again, it’s normal. You don’t feel good every time you wake up,” he said.

“But, yeah, I had to do everything I could to feel better for the match, but I didn’t have the same energy as I normally have when I play.”

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