Alcaraz Gets French Open Wake-Up Call After Slumping In Rome

Carlos Alcaraz slumped to a third-round defeat at the Italian Open by unheralded Hungarian Fabian Marozsan on Monday, just two weeks before he heads into the French Open as the top seed. The 20-year-old Spaniard, who is guaranteed to replace Novak Djokovic as world number one on May 22, had come into the tournament in Rome on the back of wins in Barcelona and Madrid. But the US Open champion was outplayed by 23-year-old Marozsan, losing 6-3, 7-6 (7/4).

Marozsan, who is ranked 135th in the world, won the final six points of the second-set tie-break to give Alcaraz a wake-up call with the French Open starting in less than a fortnight.

Alcaraz, who was the second seed in Rome but in Paris will be the top seed at a Grand Slam for the first time, said he required some sustained training to beef up his French Open preparations with the clay-court major beginning on May 28.

“I’m going to rest a little bit, some days off for me,” he said. “I really need some days to reset my mind and be fresh for Roland Garros.

“If I want to go to Paris in good shape, I have to practice, to be better. I’ve been playing so much that I couldn’t practice more than three, four days in a row.

“It’s going to be really helpful for me to have days at home practicing and getting ready to go to Roland Garros.”

He admitted he was outplayed by his Hungarian opponent.

“He surprised me a lot, his level was really, really high. I’m sure he’s going to break the top 100 very, very soon.”

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