“An Absolute Joke”: Reilly Opelka Hits Back at Tennis Media for Questioning Carlos Alcaraz US Open 2021 QF Retirement

Published 09/08/2021, 10:12 PM EDT
Sep 7, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Carlos Alcaraz of Spain acknowledges the crowd while leaving the court after his match against Felix Auger-Alliassime of Canada (not pictured) after being forced to retire with an injury on day nine of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


18-year-old Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz had the best week of his young career so far in New York. Remarkably, he became the youngest male singles player to reach the US Open quarterfinals. However, due to pain in his right abductor, he had to end his dream run in an unfortunate way. Strangely, one of the tennis media respondents saw it differently. And for this, the American tennis star Reilly Opelka has hit back.

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To begin with, the reporter questioned Carlos’ early retirement from the quarterfinal against Felix Auger-Aliassime. He added, “Certainly hope it won’t be a pattern for 18yo with much talent.” Opelka responded to him, “The only thing that is a pattern here is tennis media being an absolute joke.”

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After giving his all at the US Open 2021, Alcaraz retired at 6-3, 3-1 down against the Canadian. Consequently, Felix Auger-Aliassime will play Daniil Medvedev in the semifinals on Friday.

Reilly Opelka refutes tennis media for questioning Carlos Alcaraz’ US Open 2021 retirement

Unquestionably, the young 18-year-old Spaniard won many fans with his tennis talent. Alcaraz also showed fearlessness against top players and showed his heart on the court. Therefore, the feedback from the tennis respondent did not fit in the situation.

Sep 3, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Carlos Alcaraz of Spain reacts after beating Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece (not pictured) on day five of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

He wrote, “Sudden surrender very disappointing ending to a strong run by Carlos Alcaraz at US Open. [He] was being badly outplayed by Felix Auger-Aliassime and looked low on energy, but to tap early in major QF?”

Correspondingly, as one of the professional players, Opelka knew what went behind such a decision. And so, he answered back to the tennis media.

Opelka wrote, “Carlos is the youngest male player to reach a Grand Slam QF in over 30 years. Yet somehow you manage to come up with this? After everything he revealed this week, you are really questioning his courage on court? Unreal.”

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Notably, Alcaraz had played two back-to-back five-set matches that lasted almost four hours before meeting Auger-Aliassime. And before this event, he had no experience of it. Despite his attempts to stay in the battle, his body gave out, and he couldn’t continue.

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From here on, Alcaraz would only come back stronger than ever. Indeed, the future of tennis is bright and brave. What are your thoughts on tennis media’s view of Alcaraz’s retirement?

Watch this story: Oldest and Youngest Us Open Champions Including Serena Williams, Rafael Nadal and Others

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Purav Joshi

1118 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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