Alcaraz, Sinner handle challenges, reach quarters

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Defending Wimbledon champion Carlos Alcaraz and world No. 1 Jannik Sinner both handled challenges to move into the Wimbledon quarterfinals Sunday.

Alcaraz came up with the big shots when it mattered most to hold off Ugo Humbert in a 6-3, 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 win on Centre Court. Sinner withstood the big serving of No. 14 Ben Shelton for a 6-2, 6-4, 7-6 (9) victory.

Alcaraz seemed to have the match all but won when he clinched the second set by chasing down several seemingly out-of-reach shots on set point, even falling over after hitting one forehand and quickly getting back up to get to the next ball.

Asked to describe his play on that point, Alcaraz just said: “Unbelievable, I guess.”

But Humbert nearly staged a surprising comeback and threatened to take the match into a fifth set when he held three straight break points for a 5-3 lead in the fourth.

Alcaraz came back to win that game with the help of a couple of aces then broke for a 6-5 lead by hitting a deep forehand winner.

He set up match point with one of his delicate forehand drop shots and converted it with a service winner.

“I felt great playing today. I think I played at a really high level,” said Alcaraz, who will next play the winner of the match between No. 12 Tommy Paul and Roberto Bautista Agut.

Shelton started aggressively against Sinner under the Court 1 roof by serving and volleying in a bid to unsettle the Australian Open champion.

Sinner was equal to the task, however, and broke the feisty American twice to comfortably pocket the opening set.

The Italian player consolidated an early break in the second set with a booming ace and pulled away for a two-set advantage, as Shelton was left with another battle on his hands having been dragged the distance in each of his last three rounds.

Shelton raised the hopes of fans by breezing ahead 4-1 in the third set, but Sinner ran his opponent ragged with his power and precision to draw level after eight games and saved a break point to force a tiebreak.

Shelton squandered all four set points he earned in the tiebreak, as Sinner held his nerve to secure the win and book a meeting with either No. 5 Daniil Medvedev or No. 10 Grigor Dimitrov.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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