Spanish tennis legend Alex Corretja believes that Frances Tiafoe has definitely given us enough reasons to believe that he can win the US Open. After defeating 22-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal in the last 16 of the US Open, Tiafoe defeated Andrey Rublev 7-6(3) 7-6(0) 6-4.
In his first Grand Slam semi-final, Tiafoe will face Corretja’s compatriot Carlos Alcaraz. Tiafoe has already beaten a top 5 player this fortnight and will now look to do the same when he takes on fourth-placed Alcaraz.
«In his mind, he is not happy to reach the semi-finals,» Corretja told Eurosport. “He feels like he can go all the way and I think he can do it because he, honestly, he’s playing extremely good tennis and he’s very smart and very smart at all times.
We will see. For me, the most important thing is that he is really enjoying his time on the court. It looks like he’s having fun, and it’s not that easy to have fun at a Slam stage where you’re trying to make it to the semis.
It’s beautiful to see someone running the game so well.»
Corretja, Barbara Schett praise Tiafoe
Against Nadal, Tiafoe showed a lot of courage and competitive spirit. Although Nadal was the heavy favorite, Tiafoe came out determined to get Nadal out of New York.
Schett has applauded Tiafoe for the way he has been fighting and competing this fortnight. “He put up the hard yards, he was working a lot harder,” Schett said. «I think the confidence shows in his game because he’s trying to get the balls early, especially those returns.»
Tiafoe and Alcaraz will go head-to-head for the second time at the main level when they meet at the US Open. Last year, Tiafoe defeated Alcaraz on clay in Barcelona. Tiafoe and Alcaraz also met this summer at the Hurlingham exhibition, where the American cruised to a straight-set victory.