WATCH: Carlos Alcaraz hammers Dusan Lajovic, suffers writer’s block, meets NBA star Jimmy Butler
Carlos Alcaraz produced another hustling display as he bounced Dusan Lajovic out of the Miami Open and afterwards he met Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler.
The world No 1 remains on course to not only successfully defend his title in Florida, but his hopes of becoming only the eighth player to win the Sunshine Double are also still very much alive.
Alcaraz is 16-1 this year as he won the Argentina Open, finished runner-up at the Rio Open before demolishing Daniil Medvedev in the final of the Indian Wells Open last week.
And he notched up his second straight-set win – including his second bagel – of the tournament with another brutal display as he defeated Lajovic 6-0, 7-6 (7-5) in one hour and 31 minutes.
After being brushed aside in the opening set with Alcaraz also breaking in the first game of the second set, the Serbian did have a bit of joy in game 10 as he broke back.
However, the 19-year-old was always ahead in the tie-breaker.
“I feel fast on court, I am moving well,” the Spaniard said. “I am happy with the variety I am playing [with]. Lots of shots. I am enjoying every single second out there.”
He added: “Everything was under control or I thought it was but, you know, in the match it’s never easy.
“The nerves came out. I made a few mistakes that I hadn’t done during the whole match. So it was tough to win the match. But I’m really happy with the level that I’m playing and it was a good match.”
After the match the nerves also came out when he had to write on the camera lens as he briefly went blank before he eventually settled on “Let’s Go!”
Bit of writer’s block today, @carlosalcaraz? 😅#MiamiOpen pic.twitter.com/qmXcV4aWDT
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) March 26, 2023
And that’s not where the fun and games ended for Alcaraz as he met NBA player Buttler.
“Well, I feel great, you know, to see, like, celebrities watching my matches,” he said. “It’s unbelievable. I feel a little bit nervous when I see a person like Jimmy, celebrities, when I was playing, like, in the US Open.
“For me, it’s unbelievable, you know. In certain ways, I can’t believe that these people enjoy watching my matches for me. It’s crazy.”
Two sporting worlds collide… @carlosalcaraz @JimmyButler @MiamiOpen pic.twitter.com/99Gw8csesb
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) March 26, 2023
Up next is Tommy Paul after the 16th seeded American defeated Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-3, 7-5. Their only previous encounter came at the Canada Open last year and Paul won 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (9-7), 6-3.
“I lost the first and only match that I played against Tommy. I know that he’s a really talented and really tough player, so I have to play at my best and let’s see what’s going to happen,” the teenager said.
The winner of the Alcaraz-Paul clash will face either Taylor Fritz or Holger Rune in the quarter-final.
READ MORE: Former world No 1 assesses Carlos Alcaraz’s chances of winning 2023 French Open
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