Carlos Alcaraz reaches first grand slam semifinal after marathon, late-night finish against Jannik Sinner
Carlos Alcaraz has been playing tennis since he was 5 years old, and he has never lost a match in his career.
On a Monday night in late July, the 29-year-old pro was a member of Spain’s Davis Cup team, and he was competing in his fourth Davis Cup at the RCA Dome in Raleigh, N.C.
But the most remarkable thing about Alcaraz’s Davis Cup run is that it was cut short by a tennis injury.
Alcaraz had a right hamstring strain that ended his bid for a fourth Davis Cup with Spain after just four rounds. Because of the injury, Spain went down in the fifth set, and it ended up being the decisive one, which they lost 2-1.
“It’s tough,” Alcaraz told ESPN.com on Monday. “I don’t know what you expect in tennis, but I’ve been training hard every day, and I need to find the right way to recover.”
Alcaraz is now training again, and he will play in the Davis Cup, which starts Oct. 4 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Alcaraz’s injury — and Spain’s first Davis Cup loss — was a blow to the tournament and to Spain’s chances of claiming the overall title.
In the midst of this injury, Alcaraz won his first career Davis Cup as a member of Spain.
The match against Italy went to five sets, and Italy was victorious 5-0.
“It’s always hard when any one of your best players gets injured,” said Patrick McEnroe, who was playing in his second Davis Cup.
“So they’re definitely disappointed, but you can’t do anything but deal with it and continue.”
Spain is scheduled to play the Czech Republic on Tuesday and the Ukraine on Wednesday.
Spain has its No. 1 singles player, Albert Costa, starting his third Davis Cup.
Costa and Alcaraz are tied with a 2-1 career record against each other.
Spain’s No. 2 singles player, David Ferrer, is seeded 12th, which is the highest position he has