No. 1 Jannik Sinner, Carlos Alcaraz reach Wimbledon quarters

Tennis - Wimbledon - All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain - July 7, 2024 Italy's Jannik Sinner celebrates after winning his fourth round match against Ben Shelton of the U.S. REUTERS/Paul Childs

World No. 1 Jannik Sinner of Italy and defending champion Carlos Alcaraz of Spain are one win away from another Grand Slam semifinal showdown after both advanced to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon on Sunday in London.

Sinner saved four set points in the third set in a 6-2, 6-4, 7-6 (9) victory over No. 14 seed Ben Shelton on No. 1 Court. Alcaraz, the No. 3 seed, denied an upset bid by No. 16 seed Ugo Humbert of France with a 6-3, 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 win on Centre Court.

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En route to his first French Open title this year, Alcaraz defeated Sinner in the semifinals.

In the Wimbledon quarterfinals, Alcaraz will face No. 12 seed Tommy Paul, who beat Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut 6-2, 7-6 (3), 6-2. Sinner will take on No. 5 seed Daniil Medvedev of Russia after No. 10 seed Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria withdrew due to injury trailing 5-3 in the first set.

After taking the first two sets, Sinner trailed 4-1 in the third and held serve to draw even at 5-5 after a between-the-legs shot and a forehand passing shot to win the game.

About the between-the-legs winner, Sinner said, “that was just luck.”

Shelton took a 6-5 lead, but Sinner saved a set point and sent the set to a tiebreaker, where he saved three more set points before converting his second match point on Shelton’s double-fault.

“It was a very tough match, especially in the third set,” Sinner said. “The tiebreak we saw I had to save set points. These types of matches can go very long, and I am very happy to close it in three (sets).”

Shelton compiled 15 aces to Sinner’s seven, but also double-faulted four times while his opponent had none. Sinner edged Shelton in winners 28-27 and made 76 percent (48 of 63) of his first-serve points.

Reaching his ninth major quarterfinal in a match that lasted just over three hours, Alcaraz rallied in the fourth set after Humbert took a 4-3 lead by holding three straight break points.

Thanks to a couple of aces, Alcaraz rallied to win the next game and broke Humbert’s serve for a 6-5 lead with a deep forehand winner. The Spainard then set up match point with a forehand drop shot before closing out the match.

“Playing a lefty is always tricky,” Alcaraz said. “I played a lefty at Queen’s and learned a bit from that match. I felt great playing today. I played at a really high level.”

Alcaraz, who produced 45 winners and 14 aces, won despite committing six double-faults to Humbert’s one. The Frenchman finished with 10 aces and 47 winners.