A modern day tennis classic was played into the early morning hours at the 2022 U.S. Open men’s quarterfinals. No. 3 seed Carlos Alcaraz and No. 11 seed Jannik Sinner are two of the best young players in the world, and they gave the New York City crowd a match for the ages as Wednesday night turned into Thursday morning.
Alcaraz defeated Sinner 6-3, 6-7, 6-7, 7-5, 6-3 to put the 19-year-old Spaniard in the semifinal of a Grand Slam for the first time in his career. The match ended at 2:50 a.m. ET, which is the latest a U.S. match has ever gone. At 5 hours, 15 minutes, it’s the second longest match in U.S. Open history.
The match wasn’t just historic because of its run time — it also featured an incredibly high level of play from two rising stars. At one point in the second set, Alcaraz won one of the best points you will ever see. He went behind his back to return Sinner’s volley, then darted across the court to smash a backhand winner. You have to see this for yourself:
ALCARAZ BEHIND THE BACK WHAT?!!?!?! pic.twitter.com/ylewLwrqxu— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 8, 2022
Alcaraz is now the youngest Grand Slam semifinalist since fellow Spaniard Rafael Nadal in 2005, as well as the youngest U.S. Open semifinalist since Pete Sampras in 1990.
Even Alcaraz couldn’t believe he pulled out the victory:
Sinner, a 21-year-old Italian, had defeated Alcaraz in the Round of 16 at Wimbledon earlier this year. Sinner also defeated Alcaraz at the Umag final earlier this summer. Alcaraz got his revenge on a huge stage with the whole world gawking at what transpired.
Alcaraz vs. Sinner: Twitter reacts to epic U.S. Open match
Best match of 2022, by a considerable distance.— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) September 8, 2022
Carlos Alcaraz comes back from the brink and wins an epic over Jannik Sinner:
6-3, 6-7(7), 6-7(0), 7-5, 6-3.
Latest finish in #USOpen history by a big margin, but the future sure looked dreamy and bright on this late night.
Sign me up for the next 10 years of Sinner vs Alcaraz matches. This has been a delight— Laura Robson (@laurarobson5) September 8, 2022
Alcaraz vs Sinner is the best tennis I’ve seen this year. Bar none. We’re seeing the post-Big Three future, and it’s *bright* #USOpen2022— Big Randy (@BigRandyNLU) September 8, 2022
There can’t be many times in my life I’ve watched a live sporting event at 2:40 am ET but this Sinner v Alcaraz match is completely irresistible and I ain’t turning it off no matter how long it goes!!!— Michael Wilbon (@RealMikeWilbon) September 8, 2022
Alcaraz-Sinner = an all timer. Will always remember it. Not just the quality of the match and the late night piece, but felt like a arrival moment for Alcaraz aka LeBron 2007/Detroit.— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) September 8, 2022
I'm honestly just staggered. That's one of the best tennis matches I've ever seen, certainly. Completely blown away by Jannik Sinner and Carlos Alcaraz.— Sam Vecenie (@Sam_Vecenie) September 8, 2022
In 5 hours and 15 minutes, 19 year old Carlos Alcaraz wins one of the greatest tennis matches of all time over Jannik Sinner to make the US Open semifinals. Special kid. Special tournament. Special sport.— Dan Wolken (@DanWolken) September 8, 2022
Alcaraz vs. Sinner highlights at 2022 U.S. Open
Watch highlights of the match here:
Alcaraz now faces American Frances Tiafoe in the semifinal on Friday. Tiafoe defeated the No. 2 seed Nadal earlier in the tournament.