Home / Blog / French Open 2023 Results: Instant Reactions to Friday's Winners and Losers

French Open 2023 Results: Instant Reactions to Friday's Winners and Losers

Aug 25, 2023Aug 25, 2023

The 2023 French Open at Roland Garros is nearing an end, but the men's semifinals on Friday delivered two riveting matches with spots in Sunday's final on the line.

Novak Djokovic and 20-year-old Carlos Alcaraz kicked off Friday's action with a grueling match. After Djokovic claimed the first set 6-3, Alcaraz battled to a 7-5 victory in the second set before cramping in his leg limited his power and mobility in the final two sets of the match.

The ailment was something the world No. 1 was unable to overcome, and Djokovic went on to claim a 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 victory over the Spaniard for his ninth victory in his last 10 matches dating back to the Rome Masters last month.

The second match of Friday's semifinals saw world No. 4 Casper Ruud defeat German Alexander Zverev 6-3, 6-4, 6-0.

Ruud, who reached the semifinals of the Rome Masters last month, appears to be in peak form heading into Sunday's final.

Djokovic, ranked No. 3 in the world, and Ruud will now meet for the fifth time in their careers. Djokovic is 4-0 against Ruud, and the two last met in the 2022 Nitto ATP Finals in Italy, with the Serbian claiming a 7-5, 6-3 victory.

Djokovic can become the top-ranked men's player in the world with a win over Ruud in the French Open men's final on Sunday.

Sunday's French Open final is the opportunity Djokovic has been waiting for.

The Serbian can break a tie with Rafael Nadal for the most men's Grand Slam singles titles in history by claiming his 23rd major championship at Roland Garros on Sunday against Ruud.

Djokovic can also become the first man to win every major—Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon, US Open—at least three times.

Additionally, a French Open victory would put him one step closer to sweeping the major tournaments this year, having also defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open in January.

Only two men have won all four Grand Slam titles in the same year—Don Budge in 1938 and Rod Laver, who accomplished the feat in 1962 and 1969.

Djokovic previously won the French Open in 2016 and 2021. He has found the most success at the Australian Open, where he is a 10-time champion, and is considered one of the greatest hard-court players in the Open era with 13 hard-court major titles.

Had Alcaraz not dealt with cramping in his leg on Friday, it's worth wondering whether he would have given Djokovic a better run for his money.

The Spaniard is widely believed to be the next big thing in men's tennis, and he already has one Grand Slam title to his name as a 20-year-old, winning the 2022 U.S. Open by defeating Ruud.

Alcaraz won the U.S. Open when he was just 19 years old, becoming the first male player to win a Grand Slam as a teenager since Nadal accomplished the feat at Roland Garros in 2005.

Additionally, Alcaraz has won 10 ATP Tour men's singles titles, which includes the 2022 U.S. Open and four Masters 1000 titles. Two of his Masters 1000 titles came in the Madrid Open, while the others came in the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells and the Miami Open.

Alcaraz, who turned pro in 2018, is only just getting started, and tennis fans around the globe are in for a treat once he hits his prime.

Back in the French Open final for the second straight year, Ruud should not be taken lightly entering Sunday despite having to go up against one of the greatest players of all time.

The Norwegian owns a modest 22-11 record this year, but he has turned up the heat over the last few months and appears to finally be hitting his stride in Paris after a difficult start to the season.

Ruud has been dominant at Roland Garros in 2023, dropping just three sets in six matches en route to his third career Grand Slam final. The hot streak comes after he won his 10th ATP Tour men's singles final in the Estoril Open in April.

Ruud enters Sunday's final against Djokovic as the underdog, especially with the Serbian gunning for his 23rd Grand Slam title, but he should be able to give the 36-year-old a run for his money.