Carlos Alcaraz, who will return to world No.1 next Monday and remained on two titles in Barcelona and Madrid, was beaten Monday in the 3rd round of the Masters 1000 in Rome by the 135th world Fabian Marozsan, 6-3, 7-6 (7 /4).
Less than two weeks before the start of Roland-Garros, where he will be one of the main favorites, the 20-year-old Spaniard was overtaken by his Hungarian opponent who had never won a match on the ATP circuit before. before this Roman tournament.
In the next round, Marozsan, 23, will face Croatian Borna Coric (16th) to try to climb into the quarterfinals.
For Alcaraz, it’s an unexpected halt to a high-flying series.
After missing the Australian Open in January through injury, the Spaniard has won four of the six tournaments played since, in Buenos Aires, Indian Wells, Barcelona and Madrid. He also played the final in Rio and the semis in Miami.
In total, before facing Marozsan, Alcaraz posted since the beginning of the season two defeats for 30 victories, including 20 on clay.
But, astonishing as it is, on Monday he was suffocated by Marozsan, to the point of showing gestures of frustration.
Because everything succeeded for the native of Budapest who hit in all directions and distilled some well-felt cushioning for a total of 24 winning shots (12 for Alcaraz).
Against all odds, the Hungarian broke in the first set to lead 3-1 by taking Alcaraz’s service game white. He ended with a shutout on his own face-off.
In the second set, Marozsan stayed on his cloud until he managed the break to lead 4-3. But this time he was slightly less sharp and put Alcaraz back immediately at 4-4.
At 5-5, the Hungarian still had a break point, but could not avoid the tie break.
In that tiebreaker, Alcaraz looked able to turn the game around when they came away 4-1. But it was Marozsan who chained the next six points to clinch the best victory of his career.
Four times this year he had failed in qualifying on the main circuit: at the Australian Open, Marseille, Estoril and Banja Luka.
In Rome, after his two qualifying rounds, he had obtained his first two ATP victories by beating the Frenchman Corentin Moutet (67th) then the Czech Jiri Lehecka (39th).