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Alcaraz mauls Medvedev to set up dream final with Djokovic

Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates after winning the Gentlemen’s Singles Semi-finals match against Jannik Sinner of Italy in the Championships, Wimbledon at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London, the United Kingdom on July 14, 2023. ( The Yomiuri Shimbun ) (Photo by Tetsu Joko / Yomiuri / The Yomiuri Shimbun via AFP)

Spain's Carlos Alcaraz delivered the Wimbledon final the world wants to see with a brutal demolition job on Russia's Daniil Medvedev on Friday, racing to a 6-3 6-3 6-3 victory.

The 20-year-old phenomenon will now face a battle of the generations against 36-year-old seven-time champion Novak Djokovic, who earlier on Centre Court eased past Italian Jannik Sinner to reach his 35th Grand Slam final.

For seven games under the roof this felt like it could be a contest as third seed Medvedev, who like Alcaraz was contesting his first Wimbledon semi-final, kept pace with the top seed.

But from the moment Alcaraz broke the Medvedev serve for a 5-3 lead in the opening set it felt as though he had the grandest stage in tennis to himself with a virtuoso display.

At times it looked as though Alcaraz was toying with his opponent, working through his extensive arsenal of weapons to dismantle the 27-year-old in merciless fashion.

Two nonchalant service breaks sealed the second set and the Spaniard accelerated towards victory with another one early in the third set as Medvedev's shoulders slumped.

Like a lion toying with its prey, Alcaraz offered back a couple of service breaks with some over-casual tennis but the respite was brief and an out-classed Medvedev was put out of his misery in one hour and 50 minutes.

Alcaraz is the third Spaniard to reach the Wimbledon men's singles final after Manuel Santana and Rafa Nadal and the fourth youngest in the professional era.

Djokovic, who overwhelmed Alcaraz in the French Open semi-finals last month, is bidding to become the oldest men's singles champion and match Margaret Court's all-time record of 24 Grand Slams.

He barely got out of second gear as he swept past a subdued Jannik Sinner of Italy, easing into a record 35th Grand Slam final with a whirlwind 6-3 6-4 7-6(4) victory.

Djokovic has turned Centre Court into his own personal fiefdom having not lost there in 10 years, and the Serbian is now one win away from a record-equalling eighth title at the grasscourt major to match the mark of Roger Federer.

The 21-year-old Sinner, who was aiming to become the youngest man to reach the Wimbledon final since 2007, was outclassed, falling flat on the big occasion and allowing Djokovic to turn the screw at key moments in the contest.

He let break points slip through his fingers, including two set points in the third, while Djokovic was clinical as usual, applying constant pressure on the Italian eighth seed's serve and pouncing on opportunities when they arose.

He wrapped up the match when Sinner dumped a backhand into the net, leaving the Serbian to accept the applause of the Centre Court crowd.

- Reuters