Jannik Sinner is through to the Miami Open decider after eliminating world number one, Carlos Alcaraz 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 6-2 in Friday’s semi-final.
Sinner, 21, has enjoyed a terrific start to 2023. Since the beginning of the Australian Open, the Italian has only lost three matches – to Stefanos Tsitsipas, Daniil Medvedev and Alcaraz.
He avenged his defeat to Tsitsipas with a straight sets win at the Rotterdam Open, and he has now got one back on Alcaraz after their three-hour war of attrition.
Both players created exactly 12 break point opportunities, and Sinner’s 26 unforced errors were only one less than Alcaraz’s 27, but the Spanish 19-year-old committed an uncharacteristic nine double faults. The loss snapped Alcaraz’s 10-match winning streak.
The victory gives Sinner his second appearance in the Miami Open final after losing the 2021 edition to Hubert Hurkacz, and he now joins Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic as the only players to ever reach the final here twice before turning 22.
Sinner will get a chance to avenge his only other loss this year in the final after Daniil Medvedev booked his spot with a 7-6 (7-5) 3-6 6-3 victory over Russian compatriot Karen Khachanov.
Incredibly, Khachanov lost despite hitting 53 winners and only 11 unforced errors, and he ended up edging the total point count 93-88, but he could only convert two of his six break point opportunities, while Medvedev converted two out of four.
The win means Medvedev is the first player since Roger Federer in 2019 to reach the final of both the Indian Wells Open and the Miami Open in the same season, and he is the first since Federer in 2006 to reach five ATP finals before the clay court season begins.