Top seed Carlos Alcaraz of Spain beat Laslo Djere of Serbia 6-2 4-6 6-2 in a second-round match at the Argentina Open in Buenos Aires on Wednesday. The match lasted for more than two hours, as the 19-year-old Spaniard showed exceptional defensive skills to overcome his Serbian opponent, eight years his senior.
Carlos Alcaraz won the first set comfortably by breaking the Serb twice, but the latter hit back by winning the second. However, Alcaraz broke Djere in the very first game of the third set and never let his advantage slip thereafter.
The Spaniard, who was the year-end World No. 1 in 2022, will play Dusan Lajovic of Serbia in the quarterfinal on Friday. On that note, let us take a look at how the match unfolded.
How Carlos Alcaraz beat Laslo Djere at the Argentina Open
Alcaraz defended well against the Serb’s powerful groundstrokes:
Alcaraz defended very well against the barrage of powerful groundstrokes that Djere threw at him throughout the match. There were a good number of points Alcaraz should have lost, but ended up winning through sheer grit and defensive skills.
Still, the Serb managed to hit quite a few great winners. The down-the-line backhand return winner he hit on the set point in the second set was worth watching multiple times. Had it been an opponent with a worse defense, the Serb could probably have won the match.
going the distance 😮
Laslo Djere rips a backhand winner to take the 2nd set against Alcaraz!#ArgOpen2023 pic.twitter.com/3myGmd0qUI
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) February 16, 2023
Djere should probably have rushed the net more often:
As powerful as his groundstrokes were from the baseline, Djere was probably guilty of not rushing the net often enough. There were a number of times when Alcaraz played a defensive lob and the point was there for the taking for the Serb, had he been willing to come to the net.
However, Djere decided to stay back for the most part and allowed Alcaraz to prolong the point and then win it. Still, the former World No. 1 was given a stiff fight, which might help him during the latter stages of the tournament.
Main Photo from Getty.