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Tennis News • Juan Carlos Ferrero, coach of Alcaraz, reflects on the Alcaraz-Sinner US Open quarterfinal epic

Coach Juan Carlos Ferrer and Carlos Alcaraz of Spain celebrates with his box after defeating Casper Ruud of Norway in the US Open final. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

By Ricky Dimon

Carlos Alcaraz endured three consecutive five-set matches en route to his U.S. Open title, including two that ended after 2:00 in the morning.

But one stood out among the rest. Alcaraz’s quarterfinal thriller against Jannik Sinner–which the eventual champion won 6-3, 6-7(7), 6-7(0), 7-5, 6-3–lasted five hours and 15 minutes and resulted in the latest-ever finish in tournament history (2:50 am). As rich in quality as it was in length, Alcaraz-Sinner is widely considered to be the match of the year and one of the best matches in U.S. Open history.

“I would say it was the best match I’ve played in my entire career,” the Spaniard assessed. “At five hours and 15 minutes, from the first ball to the last, there was immense quality from both Jannik and me. Jannik and I will remember this for the rest of our lives.”

“Last night between Sinner and Alcaraz was probably one of the best matches I have seen in a long time,” Patrick Mouratoglou commented.

Patrick McEnroe said on air that he would put it “at the top” of his all-time U.S. Open list, and he also took to Twitter, saying it was “incredible tennis in every possible way.”

Juan Carlos Ferrero, Alcaraz’s coach, reflected on the epic battle several days later after the tournament had come to an end. Ferrero was asked if this is the start of a “Carlos Alcaraz era.”

“The other day I said to someone in the press that maybe Sinner and Carlos could dominate the tour for maybe the next 10 years–[based on] what I saw, the level that I saw the other day. Of course there [are] another players like Zverev, Thiem, Casper, Tsitsipas…. They are going to be there; they are going to have opportunities to win Grand Slams, for sure. But with all respect, that’s what I think.”

Ferrero is a former world No. 1, himself, and has now guided Alcaraz to the top spot. Sinner, 21, is up to 11th in the rankings and would be ninth if Wimbledon had awarded ranking points.

Only time will tell if Ferrero’s proclamation comes true, but one thing’s for sure: the future is now.

Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.