Carlos Alcaraz claimed his maiden Major title at the US Open last Sunday. Without proper rest, the young gun flew home to Valencia and joined the Spanish Davis Cup squad. Carlos missed the opening tie against Serbia and stepped in against Canada, facing Felix Auger-Aliassime in the second rubber.
Felix played on a high level and scored a 6-7, 6-4, 6-2 triumph in two hours and 50 minutes to keep his country in contention. The Canadian served well and defended all seven break points to mount the pressure on the other side.
Carlos led 7-6, 4-4 before he lost the ground behind the initial shot, getting broken three times and experiencing the first loss as world no. 1! Alcaraz praised the rival and his booming serve that kept him under pressure. The Spaniard had to work hard in his service games in the opener, prevailing in games four and six to remain on the positive side.
Alcaraz served to stay in the set at 5-6 and fired a backhand down the line winner to wrap it up and introduce a tie break. World no. 1 played well and fired a forehand down the line winner at 6-3 to clinch the opener in grueling 64 minutes.
Both players served well in the second set's opening five games before Auger-Aliassime faced a break point at 2-3. The Canadian saved it with a forehand drive-volley winner and gained a boost.
Carlos Alcaraz lost to Felix Auger-Aliassime in the Davis Cup.
Carlos served at 4-4 and sprayed a backhand mistake to lose serve and fall 5-4 behind.
Felix served for the set at 5-4 and fired a service winner to introduce a decider after almost two hours. The Canadian broke for the second straight time at the start of the final set when his rival placed a routine forehand long.
Auger-Aliassime faced four break points in game four and stayed calm to defend them and forge a 3-1 advantage with a service winner. Alcaraz could not leave those chances behind and got broken in the next game after a loose backhand that sent him 4-1 down.
The Canadian served for the victory at 5-2 and faced two break points. He erased them with winners and sealed the deal with a booming serve to celebrate the win and keep Canada in the tie. "I think Felix played on a high level and served brutally good.
I made mistakes at the end of the second set, which cost me a lot. I was not at my best physically and mentally, but I still tried my best. I was not at my 100% and will try to recover until Sunday. This is the Davis Cup, and you must give everything for your country until the last point," Carlos Alcaraz said.