The blockbuster Indian Wells final between Carlos Alcaraz and Daniil Medvedev was rocked by some early drama after the technology in the stadium failed in the first set. Alcaraz was able to halt Medvedev's 19-match win streak on hard courts to lift the Indian Wells title and overtake Novak Djokovic as World No.1.
And the Spaniard got off to a great start having raced out to a 3-0 lead, before taking the first set 6-3. Alcaraz lifted his game in the final and had Medvedev deep behind the baseline from the first few points.
'EMBARRASSING': Tennis fans left fuming over Novak Djokovic news
The 19-year-old then used one of his best weapons, his drop shot, to continually catch Medvedev out when he was pushed back too far. Alcaraz also showed maturity at the net as he played incredible volleys to leave the Russian out of answers.
However, in the fourth game of the match, the chair umpire brought both the players to the net to explain that the Hawk Eye audio system and the microphones for the out calls had failed. This meant Mohamed Lahyani had to yell out every out point that wasn't obvious as he could still see the technology in his chair.
While the situation did not seem to distract Alcaraz, it only added to the drama of the final with the windy conditions clearly rattling Medvedev. It wasn't long before Alcaraz also argued in the second set that a ball hand landed out, but was called to be touching the line.
Fans were left bewildered by the technology fail in the 'fifth grand slam' final and praised Lahyani for handling the situation.
No hawk eye audio, no microfones.
Lahyani now has to scream every call.
Alcaraz, meanwhile, all over Medvedev so far.
— José Morgado (@josemorgado) March 19, 2023
The audio system on Stadium 1 has gone on the blink again, so chair umpire Mohamed Lahyani, who can see the HawkEye calls on his monitor, is calling the lines himself using the powe of human speech.
Sometimes the good ideas are right in front of you, eh?#IndianWells
— LoveGameTennis 🎾 (@LoveGame_Tennis) March 19, 2023
Yes, pathetic jajajaja
— Diego López (@diego_lopezalfa) March 19, 2023
Best chair umpire to be in this situation. Mo loves to get involved and entertain. #IndianWells
— state of grace (@baymath) March 19, 2023
Carlos Alcaraz becomes Indian Wells champion
Alcaraz didn't let any technology drama ruin his momentum as the Spaniard lifted his game in the second set and raced to a 4-0 lead. The 19-year won 12 points in a row at one stage in the match with Medvedev looking utterly helpless against the soon-to-be World No.1.
Medvedev was only winning 20 per cent of his points on serve as the Spaniard was more aggressive and tactically astute in the final. Alcaraz won 6-3, 6-2 to reclaim the World No.1 title after missing the Australian Open tournament earlier in the year.
The Indian Wells title marks Alcaraz's third ATO 1000 event triumph at 19 years old. Alcaraz admitted before the tournament that reclaiming the World No.1 title was his goal and he did just that in emphatic fashion.
Before the match, Medvedev praised the 19-year-old and said the sky was the limits for the Spaniard who could go on to win numerous grand slams. And Alcaraz showed why so many are tipping for him to make history in the sport with one of the most dominant Indian Wells finals displays seen.
Since missing January's Australian Open through injury, Alcaraz has reached the final in all three of his 2023 events, with a win in Buenos Aires and a defeat in Rio de Janeiro, both against Cameron Norrie.
Earlier, in the day Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina defeated a misfiring Aryna Sabalenka 7-6 (11-9), 6-4 to claim the Indian Wells title. Rybakina battled her way through an incredibly close first set and was able to avenger her defeat in the Australian Open final to Sabalenka.
Sign up to our newsletter and score the biggest sport stories of the week.