Day 5 at the US Open was clearly dominated and defined on the men’s side by Carlos Alcaraz’s sensational win over world #3 Stefanos Tsitsipas, in a match that will be remembered for years to come. But there were also seven other third round matches from the bottom half of the draw.
US Open Men’s Day 5 Recap
On the plus side
Today was Alcaraz’s day without question. The 18-year-old Spaniard produced an extraordinary performance to take down Stefanos Tsitsipas and become the youngest player to reach round four of a Slam since Andrey Medvedev back at Roland Garros 1992. After a blazing start, Alcaraz looked completely down and out at 2-5 15-40* in the 3rd set but he somehow found a way to turn that set around. After getting bagelled in the 4th set few would give him any chance to win from there but he somehow pulled through with a mix of great shot-making, courage and nerves of steel. It will be a match and a victory that will be remembered for years to come.
Daniil Medvedev continued his immaculate campaign with a very easy three set win over Pablo Andujar, where he barely broke a sweat. The Russian is looking in ominous form and is the clear favorite to make the final from this half of the draw.
Frances Tiafoe got one of the biggest wins of his career, beating Andrey Rublev in five sets to make a second consecutive fourth round appearance in New York. Tiafoe showed some incredible skills and great composure to recover after wasting a 4-2 lead in the fourth set. The American will now face Felix Auger-Aliassime for a place in the quarterfinals.
Who looked bad
While Alcaraz’s performance deserves full praise, Tsitsipas clearly had this one under control and let it slip in the most baffling way possible. The way he lost the third set from 5-2 40*-15 up will surely haunt him for a while. The world #3 continues to struggle at the US Open, where he’s yet to reach the fourth round in his career, and this week has only done harm to his reputation after the controversies over his lengthy bathroom breaks.
By the same token, Tiafoe’s success was Rublev’s bitter disappointment. The Russian seemed to be looking at a great chance for a maiden Slam semifinal appearance with Tsitsipas eliminated, but he followed suit on the same day, getting soundly outhit and outplayed by Tiafoe. This result bookended a very poor year for Rublev at Slam level, with only one quarterfinal appearance in Australia.
Alexei Popyrin had a golden chance to reach a maiden Slam round four, but he wasted it. He lost a 2-0 set lead and was eventually defeated in the fifth set tiebreak. He had plenty of chances to put Evans away for good, but it just wasn’t to be. Evans will barely have any time to savour this victory, with Medvedev waiting for him in the next round.
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