If you had never watched tennis but had heard of a guy called Carlos Alcaraz and heard how great he is and decided to sit down and watch him play on Wednesday, but yet you didn’t know which player was Alcaraz then you might have picked the wrong guy if you were asked who was who. Because of the way 32-year-old Grigor Dimitrov served, hit his forehand with consistent excellence and moved around the court, you might have thought Dimitrov was the 20-year-old Carlos Alcaraz. But no, and now Dimitrov is onto the quarterfinals at the Rolex Shanghai Masters after winning 5-7 6-2 6-4.
Now Alcaraz has greater concerns. One is that he looked extremely frustrated and lost about midway through the third set. This was due to him simply being outpowered and outmoved by Dimitrov in the second set. The Bulgarian broke the Spaniard twice in the set.
Dimitrov also got a fairly early break in the third set and simply needed to hold serve to win the match which was exactly what he did. Dimitrov didn’t face a break-point in the set and it never really felt like Carlos Alcaraz had a chance of winning.
Grigor Dimitrov overpowers Carlos Alcaraz at Shanghai Masters
Another concern for Alcaraz is simply what happened to his forehand. He committed 31 unforced errors in the match (Dimitrov had 26) but 19 of Alcaraz’s unforced errors were on the forehand side. Plus, due to how well Dimitrov was gliding around the court, Alcaraz was having to do un-Alcaraz-type things such as hit touch shots in tight windows, many of which he missed.
Alcaraz has struggled with consistency since Wimbledon and hasn’t won a tournament since the grass-court major. But he has been vanquished as early in a tournament as he was at the Shanghai Masters.
Due to his early recent exits, especially not reaching the quarterfinals in Shanghai, Carlos Alcaraz has basically just handed Novak Djokovic the year-end No. 1 ATP ranking. Alcaraz would need Djokovic to lose really early in the tournaments left for the Spaniard to overtake the Serb. But as we know, Djokovic doesn’t lose early in tournaments.