May 27, 2022; Paris, France; Carlos Alcaraz (ESP) reacts to a point during his match against Sebastian Korda (USA) on day six of the French Open at Stade Roland-Garros. Mandatory Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports
- Carlos Alcaraz is the favorite against Alexander Zverev, in their second clay meeting in a month
- Their French Open quarterfinal is scheduled for May 31, to begin at approximately 10 am ET
- Read on as we break down whether Zverev has a shot, and find some betting value.
The last time Alexander Zverev met Carlos Alcaraz was just a few weeks ago, in the final of the Madrid Masters.
Even then, the German star was already the underdog despite his 2-0 record.
Zverev vs Alcaraz Odds
| Alexander Zverev (GER)||+5.5 (+105)||+310||O 35.5 (-125)|
| Carlos Alcaraz (ESP)||-5.5 (-135)||-450||U 35.5 (-105)|
Odds as of May 30 at Caesars Sportsbook
It was no contest. But the big caveat was that Zverev had barely survived a marathon semifinal the previous day against Stefanos Tsitsipas. And he had zero energy left for a final in which Alcaraz conceded just four games.
Fast forward, and they now meet in the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam. The stakes are much higher.
But Alcaraz is playing even better. And Zverev isn’t playing particularly well even though he managed to get through to the final eight.
At +2300, Zverev was well behind the favorites as a long shot pick to win the French Open before the tournament began. Nothing he’s done has done much to increase his odds; of the eight remaining players, he’s right at the bottom of the French Open odds at +3300.
Zverev is in the same half with Alcaraz, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. Only one of them can reach the final. It’s unlikely to be him.
Zverev vs Alcaraz Head-to-Head
|25 (April 20, 1997)||Age||19 (May 5, 2003)|
|Hamburg, Germany||Birthplace||El Palmar, Murcia, Spain|
|5||Career ATP Singles Titles||19|
|No. 3 (Nov. 6, 2017)||Career High Ranking||No. 6 (May 9, 2022)|
|No. 6||Current Ranking||No. 3|
|$5,452,072||Career Prize Money||$31,767,815|
|28-9||2022 Won/Loss record||32-3|
|2||Career Head to Head||1|
After an Early Scare, Alcaraz Soaring
When Alcaraz was in deep, deep trouble in his second-round match against veteran countryman Albert Ramos-Viñolas, it seemed all the hype surrounding him in terms of this year’s French Open was all going to be so much (virtual) ink spilled for naught.
But the very fact that he got through that one went a long way toward answering the question many still had: how will he handle the best-of-five set format – and seven matches – required to win a major title?
The answer to that wasn’t so much how he wriggled out of that match. It was how he came back two days later against another promising youngster and took down Sebastian Korda in three short sets.
He wasted equally little time (just eight more minutes) in dispatching No. 21 seed Karen Khachanov 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 in the fourth round Sunday.
With a ridiculous flourish, as you can see below.
Zverev vs Alcaraz Match History
|2022||Madrid Masters (F)||Outdoor Clay||6-3, 6-1||Alcaraz|
|2021||Vienna (SF)||Indoor Hard||6-3, 6-3||Zverev|
|2021||Acapulco (R32)||Outdoor Hard||6-3, 6-1||Zverev|
Zverev Predicted Alcaraz’s Rise
Was it barely a year ago that Zverev (who ended up winning the tournament) took on a gawky 17-year-old kid ranked No. 132, in the first round of Acapulco?
Why, yes it was. And Zverev gave him a comprehensive tennis lesson.
After which he praised the kid to the skies as a future champion.
“He beat me by a year!” @AlexZverev predicted Carlos Alcaraz would be in the Top-10 in a hurry, but not this fast 😂 #MMOPEN pic.twitter.com/FjGGATcUFb
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) May 7, 2022
He was dead right. And now the kid is standing in his way.
Struggling to Reach the Final Eight
Zverev won his last two matches in straight sets. But they were not easy sets. Qualifier Bernabe Zapata Miralles gave him fits in their fourth-round match.
And earlier in the tournament, he was down two sets to none before coming back to defeat newcomer Sebastian Baez.
None of it has been convincing. Just like his contemporary Stefanos Tsitsipas (who lost to 19-year-old Holger Rune Monday), he’s still young. But suddenly another generation is already coming along.
Quel coup du génial d’Alcaraz !
C’est direct un Top 5 des tweener en Grand Chelem😍#RolandGarros pic.twitter.com/SakYPBLy5q
— La Classe Sport (@LaClasseSport) May 29, 2022
The winner gets to play the winner of Djokovic vs Nadal. But that’s thinking too far ahead.
As an interesting tennis prop, take the over 35.5 games (-125) because even if it’s three close sets, or four, these two are likely to go over that.
Alcaraz could well straight-set him (at +111). But even if the odds are higher that Alcaraz wins in four, that feels like a more likely scenario unless Zverev comes in with a thoroughly defeatist attitude.
Best Bet: Alcaraz in Four Sets (+290)
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Stephanie gets the straight dope from the tennis insiders. On court, she has represented her country internationally. A BA in journalism led to years on the MLB beat and a decade covering tennis globally. She’s written for Postmedia, the Guardian, the New York Times and also publishes OpenCourt.ca.