Controversy Erupts Over Questionable Call in Alcaraz vs. Zverev Final

Carlos Alcaraz and Alexander Zverev embraced a five-setter in the Roland Garros final

by Jovica Ilic
Controversy Erupts Over Questionable Call in Alcaraz vs. Zverev Final
© Stream screenshot

Carlos Alcaraz secured his third Major title in the Roland Garros final, prevailing over Alexander Zverev 6-3, 2-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2 in four hours and 19 minutes. The Spaniard had the upper hand in sets four and five, although the result could have been different following a controversy in the fourth game of the decider.

Alexander created three break chances at 1-2 in the final set and stood millimeters from converting the second. The line umpire called Alcaraz's double fault, but the chair umpire, Renaud Lichtenstein, overruled the decision.

The hawkeye showed the ball was 2 millimeters in out, which does not necessarily mean it was the correct projection, knowing the margin of error of the hawkeye system on clay. However, the call caused controversy, with many wondering what would have happened had it been called out and had Alexander leveled the score at 2-2.

Alexander Zverev, Roland Garros 2024© Dan Istitene / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Carlos Alcaraz and Alexander Zverev fought in the Roland Garros final.

Zverev complained but continued eventually, missing a routine backhand in the next point and wasting four break points in that game.

The Spaniard had the upper hand in the rest of the duel, bringing the victory home and celebrating his third Major title at 21. The German served at 73% but could not make the difference with his initial shot. Alexander struggled behind the second serve and dropped 45% of the points in his games, getting broken nine times from 16 chances offered to Carlos.

The Spaniard also had to work hard in his games, playing against 23 break points and defending 17, making the difference in that segment and dominating sets four and five. Alcaraz was the more aggressive player, and they both hit a couple of unforced errors more than winners.

Carlos Alcaraz, Roland Garros 2024© Dan Istitene / Staff - Getty Images Sport

The young gun built the advantage in the shortest, mid-range and most extended exchanges, staying focused despite physical issues and lifting the trophy.

They traded early breaks at the beginning of the duel, and Carlos outplayed Alexander in the remaining ones, serving well and delivering two breaks for 6-3. Zverev took charge early in the second set, rattling off five games and leveling the overall score after an hour and 35 minutes.

The Spaniard broke at love in the sixth game of the third set and saved three break points in the next one for a 5-2 advantage. The young gun served for the set in game nine and made wrong choices, losing serve and sending momentum to the other side.

Alexander Zverev & Carlos Alcaraz, Roland Garros 2024© Tim Goode / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

Zverev held at love for 5-5 and clinched another break at 15 in the next one to move in front. The German denied a break point in game 12 and held for 7-5, rattling off five games as in the previous set and moving a set away from his first Major crown.

With no room for errors, Alcaraz clinched three straight breaks in the fourth set and introduced a decider after three hours and 23 minutes. He broke in the third game and survived the challenging one a few minutes later for a 3-1 advantage.

The Spaniard sealed the deal in style, breaking again in the seventh game and moving over the top with a hold in the next one.

Carlos Alcaraz Alexander Zverev Roland Garros