Carlos Alcaraz praised for classy act after rival's scary moment

The 19-year-old Spaniard showed all his class during the Rio Open.

Carlos Alcaraz (pictured left) reacting during The Rio Open and (pictured right) Alcaraz helping Fabio Fognini.
Carlos Alcaraz (pictured left) was praised for his sportsmanship after Fabio Fognini took a heavy fall in their Rio Open match. (Images: Getty Images/@TennisTV)

Carlos Alcaraz has shown class in a tight battle against Fabio Fognini after the Italian took a heavy fall during their round of 16 match in Rio De Janeiro. Alcaraz endured his toughest battle yet since his return from a four-month layoff as he defeated the enigmatic Fognini on clay 6-7, 6-2, 6-4.

Alcaraz lost the first set in a tough tiebreak, before the 19-year-old bounced back in emphatic fashion to level the match after racing through the second 6-2.

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While the match was in the balance, Alcaraz stepped up and was able to break early to hold off for a tough three-set victory against Fognini. The match was played in good spirits and once such moment epitomised the sportsmanship from the young teenager.

In the second set, Alcaraz used his trademark drop shot to bring Fognini into the net. However, the Italian couldn't make it and lost his footing as he took a heavy tumble.

Fognini looked in pain as he momentarily stayed on the ground. Alcaraz noticed the fall and quickly ran around the net to check on the Italian.

The Spaniard helped Fognini to his feet, before fetching his racquet. The crowd cheered for Alcaraz who was showing such class for a young player. "That could have been very, very nasty," the commentator said of Fognini's slide and fall.

Tennis world lauds Carlos Alcaraz

Fans were quick to praise Alcaraz for showing such class during the heat of battle. Others continued to laud Alcaraz's level of tennis having only played six matches since his return from a long injury lay-off, which saw him miss the Australian Open.

The US Open champion's next opponent will be a Serbian player - either Laslo Djere or Dusan Lajovic, who play later Thursday. The 19-year-old Alcaraz is playing his second tournament since he was sidelined for four months due to a right leg injury. In Rio, though, Alcaraz has been far less dominant against both rivals he has faced - No.556 Mateus Alves, who Alcaraz beat 6-4, 6-4 and now a three-set battle against World No.86 Fognini.

Carlos Alcaraz (pictured) fist-pumps after a win.
Carlos Alcaraz (pictured) celebrates after winning his ATP 500 Rio Open singles tennis match. (Photo by CARL DE SOUZA/AFP via Getty Images) (CARL DE SOUZA via Getty Images)

Alcaraz is also in a unique situation. If the 19-year-old Spaniard is able to defend the The Rio Open he will go level with Novak Djokovic on ranking points.

However, Djokovic will remain World No.1 because he has won more mandatory events. These include grand slams and ATP 1000 events.

with AAP

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