WATCH: Alcaraz hits underarm serve on crucial point in Rio final

WATCH: Alcaraz hits underarm serve on crucial point in Rio final

by Sebastian Dahlman

Last updated

Carlos Alcaraz and Cameron Norrie are battling it out for the 2023 Rio Open final, but the teenager showed his extreme courage in a crucial moment.

After beating all of their opponents on their way to the final, the first and the second seeded players at the ATP 500 tournament in Rio met in the final, and provided tennis fans in the Brazil's second largest city with some tennis show.

The opening set was won by the young Spaniard, who used his fifth break point to break his opponent's serve and win the opening set 7-5, however, in the second set, Norrie fought back and won the set 6-4.

Therefore, the match had to be decided in the third set, and despite the high-stakes situation, on the crucial point of the third set with the score tied at 4-4 and having an advantage, Alcaraz opted to hit an underarm serve, attempting to catch Norrie off guard and ultimately win the point.

However, the Brit was ready and won the point, as he sent a backhand down the line, leaving the teenager with no time to react, and that could have proved costly for the 19-year-old.

But he eventually won the game to lead 5-4 in the third set. The underarm serve, also known as the "sneak attack" or "drop shot serve," is when a player hits the ball on the serve from below, instead of a classic serve, which sees the player toss the ball in the air and hit it on its highest point.

While it has been used sparingly throughout tennis history, it has recently gained attention due to its effectiveness in certain situations. In Alcaraz's case, he saw an opportunity to catch Norrie off guard and take control of the point, and he used it, but after how it went, he will probably not use it so soon again.


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