Carlos Alcaraz fought his way to a 6-3, 7-5 victory over Roberto Bautista-Agut in the second round of the Barcelona Open on Thursday. Alcaraz, who won the tournament last year in his breakout season, was looking to defend his first-ever ATP Tour championship.
The 19-year-old defeated Nuno Borges in the previous round to reach the last 16 and set up the tie against the 13th seed. With his win over Bautista-Agut, Alcaraz advanced to the quarter-finals, where he will face Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.
Bautista-Agut made light work of another Spaniard, Bernabe Zapata Miralles, in his first-round tie. However, he was unable to overcome the rising star that is Alcaraz. While Bautista-Agut appeared to be holding his own in the first set, Alcaraz’s superiority became more apparent as the match progressed. Alcaraz converted two of six break points to take the first set.
Bautista-Agut showed his experience in the second set, breaking Alcaraz to level the scores at 3-3. However, Alcaraz broke back and pulled off a crucial break to edge ahead before wrapping things up with his serve. It was a hard-fought victory for Alcaraz, who will be looking to maintain his winning streak as he faces Davidovich Fokina in the quarter-finals on Friday afternoon.