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Alcaraz Retires Hurt from His Rio Open Match Due to an Ankle Injury. Wawrinka is Also Out

February 21, 2024

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Two-time major winner Carlos Alcaraz retired hurt from the Rio Open on Tuesday after two games due to a right ankle injury.

The retirement at 1-1 meant Brazil’s Thiago Monteiro advanced to the second round. He will face his compatriot Felipe Meligeni Alves for a place in the quarterfinals.

Alcaraz twisted his ankle in the first game after only two points. He received medical attention, broke Monteiro’s serve, but after the Brazilian pulled level he shook his rival’s hand and left the court walking as his coach Juan Carlos Ferrero looked concerned.

The Spanish player said his doctors said the injury was not serious.

“These things happen, even more so on clay,” Alcaraz said, “It was not a problem of the court, I got injured as I switched direction. That happens in this kind of surface.”

Alcaraz said he does feel pain when he walks and that he will have medical scans on Wednesday.

“I came back to the game to see whether I could carry on or not. I spoke to the physio on the court and we decided together I should continue to see if this would get better. It didn’t happen, so we chose to be careful and abandon due to precaution,” he said.

Monteiro said it was strange to go through after playing so little time against Alcaraz.

“On the court it didn’t look so serious, but then I saw it in the big screen and it was a bad twist. Now I can only cheer for him to recover, he is a star, a dominant one in the new generation,” the Brazilian said.

Alcaraz was the runner-up at the clay court tournament in Rio de Janeiro last year, and its winner in 2022.

The injury adds to Alcaraz’s below-par performances at the Argentina Open last week. The 20-year-old, who won the title in 2023, was eliminated by Chile’s Nicolás Jarry in the semifinals in Buenos Aires.

Earlier, three-time major winner Stan Wawrinka was beaten 7-5, 6-4 in the first round by Argentina’s Facundo Díaz Acosta. The 23-year-old Díaz Acosta beat Jarry in the final to win his first title on Sunday at the Argentina Open.

Tuesday’s match was delayed for almost two hours due to rain in Rio de Janeiro. Diaz Acosta’s next opponent will be his compatriot Sebastián Báez.

The 38-year-old Wawrinka won the 2014 Australian Open, 2015 French Open and 2016 U.S. Open, where he defeated the world No. 1 player in the final on all three occasions.

Díaz Acosta played in Argentina as a wild-card entry with a career-high ranking of 87. He rose to No. 59 on Monday.

“I had to have a lot of patience because of the rain,” Díaz Acosta said. “Stan is a legend, it was amazing to play against him.”

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