Carlos Alcaraz was thrilled to see Argentinian tennis legend Gabriela Sabatini in the stands for his Buenos Aires quarterfinal match. On Friday, top-seeded Alcaraz ousted Dusan Lajovic 6-4 6-2 to progress into the Buenos Aires semifinal.
Sabatini, the 1990 US Open champion, was in the stands for Alcaraz’s match. After the match, Alcaraz and Sabatini met in the lounge. “Thank you very much Gaby for coming to see me! Always fantastic!” Alcaraz tweeted.
Muchas gracias Gaby por venir a verme!
â¤ï¸ Siempre fantástica! ð¤© @sabatinigabyok pic.twitter.com/XOifKtWmf1 — Carlos Alcaraz (@carlosalcaraz) February 18, 2023
Alcaraz on beating Lajovic
Alcaraz, who defeated Lajovic in their first meeting at the 2022 Australian Open, insisted he entered the Buenos Aires match believing it would be a tough meeting against Lajovic.
“I think I played really, really well from the beginning until the last ball, the last point. I knew that it was going to be really, really difficult. Dusan is playing great on clay, [he is] a great player, a really tough one.
I had to be really, really solid from deep in the court. My second match of the year and I’m really happy with my performance,” Alcaraz said, per the ATP website. Alcaraz got off to a great start to the match, breaking Lajovic in the second game and serving out the following game for an early 3-0 lead.
Alcaraz had a chance to go up by a double break in the fourth game but Lajovic saved three break points to get on the board and cut the deficit to 3-1. Lajovic then broke back Alcaraz in the fifth game, but the Spaniard clinched another break in the sixth game to open a 4-2 lead.
In the seventh game, Lajovic again broke back Alcaraz and also served out the following game to tie the first set to four games apiece. However, Alcaraz was able to keep his focus as he served out the ninth game for a 5-4 lead, before breaking Lajovic in the 10th game – the game in which the Serb was serving to stay in the first set.
Lajovic’s game collapsed after losing the first set as Alcaraz broke the Serb twice in the second set to complete a two-set win.