Carlos Alcaraz fulfilled his top seeding after an abdominal injury break as he beat Jannik Sinner 7-6 (4), 6-3 on Saturday to set up an Indian Wells Masters final with Daniil Medvedev.
Sinner, 19, drove a winner into the empty court on his second match point to defeat his 21-year-old Italian opponent in a battle of the next tennis generation.
The Spaniard will face off on Sunday against on-form Daniil Medvedev, who completed his 19th straight match win earlier as he defeated Frances Tiafoe 7-5, 7-6 (4).
“Always better to finish on your first match point and not on the eighth,” Medvedev said.
“But that’s what makes tennis also a fun sport. I’m just really happy that I managed not to lose this match and not to have regrets, nightmares, whatever.”
Alcaraz is closing in on a return to the top ATP ranking, which he will reach if he stops the Medvedev juggernaut.
The match finished in a relatively quick two hours – well under the five and a quarter it took Alcaraz to win their last meeting in the US Open quarter-finals which ended at 2:50 am in New York.
The Spaniard remains on track to become the first champion since his idol Rafael Nadal in 2007 to win all six of his matches here on the way to the trophy.
Medvedev will be bidding to win his fourth title in a row after Rotterdam, Doha and Dubai.
He beat the youngster in their only previous meeting, the Wimbledon second round in 2021.
“He has amazing skills which are tough to compare to everyone,” Medvedev said of Alcaraz.
” I don’t think there is anyone who can hit (a forehand) this strong and also with topspin. That’s why he was No. 1 in the world, youngest No. 1 in the history.
“It’s gonna be great and fun to play against him.”Alcaraz slams Sinner to face Medvedev in IW