Carlos Alcaraz breezes into French Open quarter-finals with victory over Felix Auger-Aliassime

Carlos Alcaraz of Spain/Carlos Alcaraz vs Felix Auger-Aliassime: French Open score and updates as Spaniard takes opening set
Third seed Carlos Alcaraz took the opening set in Paris - AP/Thibault Camus

Carlos Alcaraz charged into the French Open quarter-finals for a third straight year after the twice Grand Slam champion thrashed 21st seed Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 with an entertaining display at Roland Garros.

After an exchange of breaks early in the contest, third seed Alcaraz wasted several chances to punish Auger-Aliassime’s serve but the 21-year-old finally got his reward with a sliding volley for a 5-3 lead and held his nerve to win the next game.

Last year’s semi-finalist showcased his skills at the net again to save a break point at 1-2 in the second set and got back level after a nine-minute game, before unleashing a huge backhand down the line to grab the lead in the next game.

The 23-year-old Auger-Aliassime came out fighting following treatment for an injury, but Alcaraz recovered from 0-40 down to extend his lead, delighting fans with a flicked single-handed backhand winner from deep en route to a two-set advantage.

Still playing within himself after a recent arm injury, the world No 3 raced to a 5-0 lead in the third set, closing out the match in style to book a last-eight clash with ninth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas.

More to follow...

Carlos Alcaraz vs Felix Auger-Aliassime: As it happened

03:54 PM BST

Thanks for following this one with us

We will see you for tennis soon I hope.

03:35 PM BST

Alcaraz speaks

“He is a great player, playing great tennis. I was looking forward to this, I was very happy to win. I felt strong in the rallies, five or six or seven shots in a point. Good intensity and rhythm. He leads with his serves and gets a lot of free points.

“I believe in myself and my team. I got better after every match.”

“Last night I watched the football and the first set of Novak’s but he was on too late, I’m not going to lie. I went to bed at the (?) second set.”

(Just looked it up - he is a Real Madrid fan)

“Stefanos Tsitsipas (next opponent) is playing great but I think I have the key to him.”

03:32 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 6-3 6-1 Auger-Aliassime

And serve it out he does! That is game, set and match to Carlos Alcaraz.

A superb, dominant performance that really had no weaknesses. Never in doubt, and if he had any issues with the arm they certainly weren’t on show today. Strips his shirt off at the end of the match and pulls on a hoody.

03:31 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 6-3 5-1 Auger-Aliassime

Auger-Aliassime holds to make Alcaraz serve it out.

03:24 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 6-3 5-0 Auger-Aliassime*

Alcaraz holds to 15 and is one game away now. Only Auger-Aliassime can say how much of an impact that muscle strain in the second set has had but Alcaraz has been winning this at a canter since then and, in fairness, looked to have the measure of his man before that as well.

03:22 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 6-3 4-0 Auger-Aliassime

Two double faults in this service game, stick a fork in Felix. Break of serve

03:17 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 6-3 3-0 Auger-Aliassime*

A double fault is but a bump in the road for the 21-year-old, who was knocked out in the semis last year by Djokovic, on his way to a service hold and a 3-0 advantage.

The BBC’s Annabel Croft says: “Alcaraz is so good technically. Every ball is struck with authority, purpose, control, aggression, weight. There is so much to admire about what he is doing.”

03:08 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 6-3 2-0 Auger-Aliassime

Three deuces, then a break of serve. The Canadian is making too many errors at the critical moments. He puts a crosscourt forehand long, it’ll go in the books as an unforced error but the blad facts of that don’t take in the pressure that the injured underdog is under at all moments.

There looks to be no way back.

03:07 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 6-3 1-0 Auger-Aliassime*

Alcaraz begins the third and, on all evidence so far, final set with a service hold.

02:57 PM BST

Alcaraz wins the second set

The best thing you can say for Felix is that the groin strain he appeared to suffer in game six didn’t hamper him too much.

02:55 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 6-3 Auger-Aliassime

Alcaraz turns the screw by breaking Auger-Aliassime’s serve. The Canadian starts the game with a double fault and things don’t really pick up from there. It’s soon 0-40 and although he saves the first BP, he doesn’t save the next one. Alcaraz wins the second set 6-3

02:53 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 5-3 Auger-Aliassime*

Auger-Aliassime obviously needs to break this serve without further ado but to be honest he never really gets a look-in. The Spanish player serving with real command and he looks extremely tough to beat.

02:45 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 4-3 Auger-Aliassime

A double fault notwithstanding, Felix holds his serve.

02:40 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 4-2 Auger-Aliassime*

Pay rise for that physio!  Auger-Aliassime is skipping and stretching around like a good ‘un. Terrific slide and reach here for a ground stroke and he races to 0-40. But Alcaraz doggedly hangs in there.

FAA gets himself into a good position at 30-40. But some poor decision making with a drop shot / at the net and Alcaraz saves a third BP. Eventually wraps up the service hold and that’s a big missed opportunity.

02:34 PM BST

Auger-Aliassime back on

and ready to continue. He is a break down.

02:26 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 3-2 Auger-Aliassime

Danger here for Montreal’s finest! He’s in trouble at 0-40. He saves the first BP. Second BP, he puts his serve into the net. Strong second serve but CA is on it, gets it back and now produces an absolute bit of class as he threads a passing shot down the line for a break of serve.

After that game, Auger-Aliassime has got the trainer on. He slid and stretched for a ground stroke and he looks to have tweaked a groin muscle. The trainer is giving his inner left thigh a good rub. Now he’s standing up and stretching. He looks in discomfort rather than pain... but no, wait. He’s walking off.

02:18 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 2-2 Auger-Aliassime*

Alcaraz is getting 67% of his first serves in so far. But F A-A is making him work in this game. It’s deuce, and now another deuce. And a third. No break point as yet.

02:17 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 1-2 Auger-Aliassime

Auger-Aliassime hold his service to love, perhaps that can be a platform for an assault on the Alcaraz serve.

02:08 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 1-1 Auger-Aliassime*

And the Spanish superstar-in-making does the same in the second game of the second set.

02:07 PM BST

Alcaraz* 6-3 0-1 Auger-Aliassime

The Canadian holds his opening service game.

02:06 PM BST

Alcaraz wins first set 6-3

Looking classy.

01:59 PM BST

Alcaraz 6-3 Auger-Aliassime*

And Carlos Alcaraz has wrapped that set up with an authoritative service hold. He was a bit slow out of the blocks in the first game but looks to be taking command of the match now.

01:49 PM BST

Alcaraz* 5-3 Auger-Aliassime

Auger-Aliassime tries a drop shot that sits up and begs, Alcaraz buries a winner and roars, urges the crowd to cheer. Pumps his fist. That was the longest rally of the match at 24 shots. Wins the next point as well and Felix is under pressure at 0-30.

That’s it! Carlos with some commanding backhands, excellent judgment of when to approach the net. And he’s converted a break point.

01:48 PM BST

Alcaraz 4-3 Auger-Aliassime*

Carlos holds that with authority.

01:47 PM BST

Alcaraz* 3-3 Auger-Aliassime

A simpler hold for F A-A this time. A tall man at six-four, he’s got the serve working well, not having to use second serve very often.

01:39 PM BST

Alcaraz 3-2 Auger-Aliassime*

Alcaraz comes into this having had problems with his racket hand, and he’s still got a tubing bandage on his right arm. If it is causing him any pain or distress, that’s not discernible to the viewer at this point: he’s walloping balls with that mighty forehand in jolly fashion. Holds his service here.

01:33 PM BST

Alcaraz* 2-2 Auger-Aliassime

A very long game, nearly nine minutes, as Carlos has the Canadian’s serve under serious pressure. Felix saves three break points and eventually gets out of it unscathed.

01:25 PM BST

Paris weather

No rain is forecast and it’s a relatively clement 18 degrees.

01:22 PM BST

Alcaraz 2-1 Auger-Aliassime*

Scrappy affair so far as the players trade unforced errors. But the first bit of quality comes at 30-0 when Alcaraz comes to the net for a superb serve-and-volley number. Wins that point and then wraps up the game to love.

01:19 PM BST

Alcaraz* 1-1 Auger-Aliassime

But the Spaniard breaks straight back.

01:17 PM BST

Alcaraz 0-1 Auger-Aliassime*

A break of service in the first game for the underdog! A double fault at 15-30 not helping the cause.

01:14 PM BST

Alcaraz coming up

Good afternoon and welcome to our live blog of French Open men’s fourth round action. Carlos Alcaraz and Felix Auger Aliassime will be on court soon after 1pm. That will be sooner than they might have been expecting: they are third on court Philippe-Chatrier today (!) but Iga Swiatek and Coco Gauff both absolutely devoured their respective opponents in the day’s earlier matches.

Swiatek battered Anastasia Potapova of Russia 6-0, 6-0  and bear in mind that AP is ranked 43 in the world so hardly a competition winner. Or any sort of winner, on today’s showing. Gauff then wiped the floor with Elisabetta Cocciaretto, the Italian number two, losing only three games in the process. Prior to the match, Cocciaretto said: “Italians, we were born on clay. It’s different for the other players, from China and the United States, who were born on hardcourts. For us, it’s not a comfort zone but our surface.” Womp-womp.

All of which means than Senor Alcaraz will be in action shortly. He seems in fine fettle. He showed steely resolve in his most convincing match at the French Open this year for a 6-4 7-6(5) 6-3 victory over American Sebastian Korda in his last match.

Still wearing a compression sleeve after a recent forearm issue, Alcaraz produced a stellar show in a rematch of the duo’s 2022 encounter to firmly put himself back in the conversation as the favourite to lift the title in Paris and a third major.

“I feel amazing, feel great playing on this court. Obviously I have great memories here,” Alcaraz said.

“Great matches I’ve played before. I’m feeling better and better every match I play. The crowd was amazing. Every day it’s even better. I’m excited to play in the second week in Paris again. Hopefully I’ll keep going.”

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