French Open live reaction (2024)

Carlos Alcaraz won his first French Open men's singles title at Roland Garros after his final victory over Alexander Zverev in five thrilling sets

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Michael Bailey

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Michael Bailey·Live Reporter

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Carlos Alcaraz wins the 2024 men's singles French Open title

  • Carlos Alcaraz (3) beats Alexander Zverev (4) 6-3, 2-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2.
  • Alcaraz comes from 2-1 down to win, as he did against Jannik Sinner (1) in the semis.
  • The Spaniard wins his third Grand Slam and first French Open title.
  • There was also a US winner today, with Coco Gauff claiming the women's doubles title.

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GO FURTHERFrench Open final analysis: Carlos Alcaraz beats Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros
June 9, 2024 at 4:25 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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Wimbledon, it’s over to you

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So that is the 2024 clay season all but done. Next up, the grass and all eyes shifting to Wimbledon, which takes place in south west London over the first two weeks of July.

To bring us full circle, last year saw Alexander Zverev (19) go out in the third round after a straight sets defeat to Matteo Berrettini.

As for Carlos Alcaraz (1), he will be defending his 2023 title after beating Novak Djokovic in five sets on Centre Court.

Djokovic is a seven-times champion at Wimbledon but he won’t be there this year, due to the knee injury that forced him to withdraw from the French Open quarterfinals earlier this week.

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June 9, 2024 at 4:10 PM EDTMatthew Futterman·Senior Writer, Tennis

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How did Alcaraz handle the pressure?

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One of the truisms of tennis is to pay very close attention to what a player does under pressure, when they really need a point.

Carlos Alcaraz was fighting his way out of crucial break-point danger all afternoon, and never more so in the fourth game of the fifth set, when he fell 0-40 down after he had earned what looked like it might be the decisive break and was four games from the finish line. He climbed out of that hole with the help of a faltering Zverev then finally had a game point of his own.

Alcaraz cracked a serve to Zverev’s backhand and when the return floated back to him, he didn’t try to to pound a ball through the back wall. He feathered a drop shot to the front of the court. Zverev didn’t bother running for it.

He did it again in the final game at 15-15. It worked.

GO FURTHERFrench Open final analysis: Carlos Alcaraz beats Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros
June 9, 2024 at 4:00 PM EDTCharlie Eccleshare·Tennis Writer

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Can Zverev iron out the fluctuations in his serve and volley?

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The serve has defined much of Alexander Zverev’s career. How can it fluctuate from being a formidable weapon to a complete liability? How can it be that a player who is 6ft 6in can sometimes look so nervy when doing something that should come so naturally?

And how much is this a mental barrier?

But in the fifth set, it wasn’t the serve. He hit two wonderful first serves and came in behind them intelligently. The first time, he poked a backhand volley long. The second, he hit a duff effort into the net.

Read more with the link below.

GO FURTHERFrench Open final analysis: Carlos Alcaraz beats Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros
June 9, 2024 at 3:50 PM EDTMatthew Futterman·Senior Writer, Tennis

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Alcaraz figures out winning ugly

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It’s a safe bet that no one ever would have thought to have put “winning ugly” and Carlos Alcaraz in the same sentence, but that is what unfolded in Paris.

For long stretches, Alcaraz’s game was downright sloppy and unreliable. He sprayed and framed his forehands. He resorted to moonballs on his backhand.

He struggled to hold his serve at what looked like the pivot point in the third set, when he was up 5-2 and had seemingly cracked Alexander Zverev’s resolve by breaking him to love after previously losing 14 points in a row on the German’s serve.

Read more with the link below.

GO FURTHERFrench Open final analysis: Carlos Alcaraz beats Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros
June 9, 2024 at 3:40 PM EDTCharlie Eccleshare·Tennis Writer

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A fight for middle ground in the opening exchanges

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The Athletic

In the first set, the two players were winning a similar number of points when the rallies were up to four shorts or longer than nine — the difference was in the middle, in rallies of between five and eight shots.

Alcaraz dominated this metric in the first set, using his greater variety of speed, spin and particularly height to either bait Zverev into mistakes, or to create simple finishing shots that kept the rallies shorter than they might have been.

Read more with the link below.

GO FURTHERFrench Open final analysis: Carlos Alcaraz beats Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros
June 9, 2024 at 3:30 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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A compelling French Open final, debriefed

So there we have it. Carlos Alcaraz (3) beat Alexander Zverev (4) in five thrilling sets of an often jittery and tense French Open final at Roland Garros.

The match oscillated violently before Alcaraz found his shotmaking and ruthless edge to claim his first French Open title, and third Grand Slam title on three different surfaces by the age of 21.

Let's take you though a final, dissected, thanks to our courtside tennis writers in Paris, Charlie Eccleshare and Matt Futterman — which you can read in full with the link below.

GO FURTHERFrench Open final analysis: Carlos Alcaraz beats Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros

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June 9, 2024 at 3:15 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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There was a US winner today too

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The day may have belonged to Spain's Carlos Alcaraz but there was a US winner earlier today at Roland Garros.

Coco Gauff won the women’s doubles title with partner Katerina Siniakova, beating yesterday's women's singles beaten finalist Jasmine Paolini and her Italian compatriot Sara Errani 7-6(5), 6-3.

Not bad given Gauff and Siniakova were playing together for the first time, with Gauff’s usual partner Jessica Pegula out injured ahead of the tournament.

You can read more from James Hansen below.

GO FURTHERCoco Gauff wins French Open doubles title with Katerina Siniakova
June 9, 2024 at 3:04 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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Connors best came a year older

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One more. Carlos Alcaraz is also the youngest player in the Open era to win three different Grand Slam men's singles titles, doing it almost a year younger than the previous youngest.

That was Jimmy Connors, who did it almost a year older than Alcaraz at the 1974 US Open.

Thank you to Opta Ace for these belters.

June 9, 2024 at 2:57 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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The youngest — and also the fastest

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Not only is Carlos Alcaraz the youngest to win majors on all three surfaces, but he has also done it in the fewest appearances in men's singles main draws. And by quite a distance. Just 13 in fact. This is the Open era list:

  • 13 — CARLOS ALCARAZ
  • 20 — Jimmy Connors, Rafael Nadal
  • 24 — Mats Wilander
  • 36 — Andre Agassi
June 9, 2024 at 2:51 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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Alcaraz goes better, younger, than Rafa

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Let’s bring you more of the historic context from Carlos Alcaraz winning his first French Open title today. And we’ll begin with this beauty…

Alcaraz has now become the youngest player in the Open era to win men’s singles Grand Slam titles on all three surfaces: clay, grass and hard court. Alcaraz has done it aged 21 years 35 days.

Rafael Nadal had previously led this, completing the trio at the 2009 Australian Open aged 22 years 243 days, so I imagine Alcaraz will like this one.

June 9, 2024 at 2:43 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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Time for another tattoo, Carlos

Do you know someone else who will be delighted at Carlos Alcaraz’s victory today? A tattooist. Somewhere.

I apologize for not knowing who or where but Alcaraz’s win means he is now set to add to his tattoo collection, which has so far marked his tennis achievements.

The Spaniard has already joked it will be of the Eiffel Tower, but I guess we’ll have to wait a bit of time for him to decide properly.

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June 9, 2024 at 2:34 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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The world now awaits for Alcaraz

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I loved this piece from our tennis editor James Hansen ahead of today's French Open men's singles final — and perhaps it carries even more weight now we know our victor.

After all, once again Carlos Alcaraz proved to be “a little bit borderline too much, you know.”

The piece is linked below. Enjoy.

GO FURTHERCarlos Alcaraz and Alexander Zverev’s French Open final and the weight of history
June 9, 2024 at 2:30 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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A cracking final, dissected for you

What a compelling men's singles final we've been treated to at Roland Garros.

And if you missed a beat, given our briefing a read from the pens of our correspondents courtside in Paris, Charlie Eccleshare and Matthew Futterman.

GO FURTHERFrench Open final analysis: Carlos Alcaraz beats Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros
June 9, 2024 at 2:24 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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More to come from these two?

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If both Alexander Zverev and Carlos Alcaraz stay fit, you wonder when we'll next see these two face off in a Grand Slam final — although staying on opposite sides of the draws would help too, obviously.

June 9, 2024 at 2:20 PM EDTJames Hansen·Senior Editor, Tennis

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Playing by a well-known mantra

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In his press conference after beating Jannik Sinner in the semifinals, Carlos Alcaraz cracked up the room when he explained what his coaching team had told him when he was down: Play with your heart, play with your head... and you know the rest.

This was a vintage head-heart-balls performance from the Spaniard, managing to bring himself back from a listless period in the middle of the match when he made errors and took swipes at the condition of the court.

June 9, 2024 at 2:15 PM EDTCharlie Eccleshare·Tennis Writer

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All that mattered was how it finished

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A strange match in lots of ways, but Carlos Alcaraz belatedly found some magic and even if he hadn't, all that really mattered today was getting his hands on the Coupe des Mousquetaires for the first time.

As he put it on Friday: "Finals aren't for playing, they are for winning."

A third Grand Slam title having only just turned 21 is an astonishing achievement. To do it on three different surfaces even more so.

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June 9, 2024 at 2:11 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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Alcaraz moving up in the world

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The good news keeps coming for Carlos Alcaraz. With this French Open title, the Spanish third seed will now return to world No 2 in the ATP rankings.

That is behind Jannik Sinner, who already had top spot booked after Novak Djokovic’s withdrawal ahead of his quarterfinals due to his knee injury.

Alcaraz was last at No 2 back in March, while you have to go back to August 2023 for when the Spaniard was at No 1.

June 9, 2024 at 2:05 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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'I call you a team but it’s a family'

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But Carlos Alcaraz saved his warmest words for the team that got him though his injury issues to make it through an entire Grand Slam undefeated:

💬 “The last month we were struggling a lot with the injury and we had a lot of doubts coming here. Trying not to practice too much.

“I’m really grateful to have the team I have. Everyone gives their heart just to make me improve as a player and a person, to grow up. I call you a team but it’s a family.”

June 9, 2024 at 2:00 PM EDTMichael Bailey·Live Reporter

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Alcaraz's warm works for Zverev's comeback

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As for Carlos Alcaraz, there was no hiding his incredible joy at what he’s just managed here at Roland Garros — the goal of getting his name alongside some of the Spanish greats.

Speaking on Court Philippe-Chatrier just now, Alcaraz started by addressing the man he beat, Alexander Zverev:

💬 “It’s unbelievable the level you are playing and the work you’re putting in. I think I know that everything you have been through these last years, with the injury on this court, the work that got you to this final…

“It has been an unbelievable journey and I’m sure it’ll give you the chance to win this tournament and a Slam very soon.”

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French Open live reaction (2024)

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