Alcaraz on Djokovic’s comeback vs Djere: “He’s doing the same things he did when he was 20, it’s incredible”

Carlos Alcaraz never underestimates Novak Djokovic – or, for that matter, himself

Carlos Alcaraz at the 2023 US Open Carlos Alcaraz at the 2023 US Open (Chryslene Caillaud/Panoramic)

Carlos Alcaraz didn’t have time for a late night on Friday, knowing that he had to play Dan Evans on Saturday afternoon, so he didn’t stay up to watch all of Novak Djokovic against Laslo Djere.

He just caught the first two sets, with Djere rocketing to a 6-4, 6-4 lead against the man who will become the world No 1 again after this fortnight. The current holder of the top spot went to bed knowing the scoreline – but convinced that Djokovic would stage a comeback.

Once again, Djokovic pulled something amazing out of the bag on the biggest stage of all, and Alcaraz woke on Saturday morning to see that his rival had yet another five-set win.

“When I go to bed, I was thinking Novak is going to come back, that’s for sure,” Alcaraz said in his press conference on Saturday. “He shows once again that he’s one of the best in history. Just he has come back from two sets to love down, I think I saw, like, six, seven times. So it’s something crazy.

“Stay 36 years old and doing the same things that when he was 20, it’s incredible. We have to give credit about that, and it’s something I admire.”

Alcaraz: I was not thinking about losing

Alcaraz’s third-round match against Evans was one of the most enjoyable to watch of the tournament thus far, stretching to four sets, but the Spaniard said he was confident in his own ability to get the job done in the longer competition format.

“Honestly, the first set was close. I didn’t take my opportunities to break, to break again. In the fourth set we were playing a great match. You know, I was not thinking about I can lose or not. I just, I was focused on play my best in that game, try to break his serve as soon as I can.

“That was the only thing that I was thinking about. I was not worried about I can lose or not.”

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