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Alcaraz reaches Queen’s final, closes in on number one ranking

Carlos Alcaraz moved to the brink of his first grass court title and reclaiming the world number one ranking from Novak Djokovic after sweeping aside Sebastian Korda 6-3, 6-4 to reach the final at Queen’s Club on Saturday.

The Spaniard will face Australia’s Alex de Minaur, who beat second seed Holger Rune 6-3, 7-6 (7/2), in Sunday’s final.

Playing in just his third grass court tournament of his career, Alcaraz has adapted quickly to the conditions after a tough first round clash against French lucky loser Arthur Rinderknech.

The US Open champion had to recover from a slow start as he was broken for the only time in the opening game.

But Korda was let down by a number of double faults at key moments as Alcaraz broke back immediately and edged a tight first set after breaking again in the eighth game.

The second set was more straightforward for the 20-year-old as Alcaraz broke to love in the third game and comfortably served it out.

“I’m playing great, I’m feeling great,” said Alcaraz, adding that this was the best performance of his short career on the grass to date.

“I’m really happy to play here in Queen’s. Since the first match, I feel the love from the crowd.”

A fifth title of the year would take Alcaraz back above Djokovic, who won their battle at the French Open earlier this month, at the top of the world rankings.

De Minaur continued his fine form in London as world number six Rune was no match for the big-serving Aussie.

The world number 18 ended Andy Murray’s renaissance on the grass in the first round and is eyeing a second grass court title after winning in Eastbourne in 2021.

“I love being here and playing on this court in front of this amazing crowd,” De Minaur said.

“I am having a good week and this was my best performance of the week.”