Alcaraz overcomes Schwartzman to win Rio Open

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RIO DE JANEIRO — Spanish teenager Carlos Alcaraz beat Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman 6-4, 6-2 to win the Rio Open.

The 18-year-old Alcaraz overcame third-seeded Schwartzman in the final to the delight of Brazilian fans at the clay-court tournament.

The seventh-seeded Spaniard won his first professional match in Rio de Janeiro two years ago and his first tournament last year at Umag, Croatia, also on clay.

The 29-year-old Schwartzman said his younger rival is doing “an amazing job.”

“He is so young and is already achieving impressive things,” the Argentine said.

Alcaraz praised Schwartzman’s fighting spirit and thanked the crowd for its support.

“I have no words to describe what I had here from the first match until this final,” Alcaraz said.

The Spaniard converted five of his six break points overall and dominated with impressive baseline play.

Alcaraz’s path to the title included upsetting top-seeded Matteo Berrettini in the quarterfinals and then beating another Italian, Fabio Fognini, in the semifinals.

Fitness was a key element of Sunday’s final. Both players had their quarterfinals and semifinals on Saturday due to heavy rain falling in Rio during the week.

Schwartzman had threatened not to play his semifinal match against countryman Francisco Cerundolo if he didn’t have enough time to rest after a lengthy quarterfinal against Spain’s Pablo Andujar.

Parma Ladies Open semifinals postponed to same day as final

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PARMA, Italy — The semifinals of the Parma Ladies Open have been postponed by a day and will be played shortly before Saturday’s final.

The decision was made because of persistent rain at the clay-court tournament on Friday.

Top-seeded Maria Sakkari will start on center court against Danka Kovinic at 10:30 a.m. local time (0830 GMT) on Saturday before sixth-seeded Ana Bogdan’s match against Mayar Sherif.

The final will be after 6 p.m. local time, shortly after the doubles final – with the doubles semifinals also being played earlier in the day on a different court.

Top-seeded Sakkari reaches semifinals at Parma Ladies Open

Maria Sakkari
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PARMA, Italy — Top-seeded Maria Sakkari rallied past 97th-ranked Maryna Zanevska 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 on Thursday at the Parma Ladies Open to reach her first semifinal since the grass-court season.

Sakkari, who has gone three sets in all three of her matches this week, will face Danka Kovinic for a spot in the final of the clay-court event after Kovinic beat Jasmine Paolini 6-4, 6-4.

In her previous semifinal, Sakkari lost to Belinda Bencic in Berlin in June. The seventh-ranked Greek player was eliminated by Wang Xiyu in the second round of the U.S. Open on Aug. 31.

In the bottom half of the draw, Mayar Sherif of Egypt beat American opponent Lauren Davis 7-6 (2), 6-3 to reach her second career semifinal. Sherif next faces Ana Bogdan, who defeated fellow Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu 6-2, 7-6 (6).