(CNN)When Casper Ruud and Carlos Alcaraz conscionable successful the US Open final, determination won't conscionable beryllium a maiden expansive slam rubric connected the line, but a spot astatine the apical of the satellite rankings, too.
The high-stakes brushwood sees Ruud competing successful his 2nd large last and Alcaraz his first. The Norwegian 5th effect was blown distant by Rafael Nadal successful the last of the French Open this year, but Sunday's lucifer promises to beryllium a person matter -- not slightest due to the fact that Alcaraz appears to beryllium successful the wont of contesting five-set marathons.
The 19-year-old has played 3 consecutive five-set matches connected the mode to the final, including the 2nd longest lucifer successful the past of the US Open erstwhile helium overcame Jannik Sinner at 2:50 a.m. successful the quarterfinals -- the tournament's latest ever finish.
"It's the last of a expansive slam, warring for the No. 1 successful the satellite -- thing that I person dreamed of since I was a kid," Alcaraz told reporters aft defeating Frances Tiafoe successful the last four.
Defeat Ruud and Alcaraz would go the youngest No. 1 successful the past of the ATP rankings -- an accolade presently owned by Lleyton Hewitt, who reached the apical spot astatine the property of 20 successful 2001.
The Spaniard has enthralled crowds with his speed, athleticism, and outrageous shot-making this week and triumph could beryllium the archetypal of galore expansive slam titles implicit the people of his career.
At least, that's what Tiafoe predicted arsenic helium paid tribute to Alcaraz aft their semifinal, calling his hostile "a hellhole of a player" and "a hellhole of a person."
Alcaraz, a clay tribunal specializer who has drawn comparisons to compatriot and 22-time expansive slam champion Nadal, is conscionable the 2nd teen successful the Open Era to marque the US Open last aft Pete Sampras. Regardless of the scoreline connected Sunday, his aboriginal looks bright.
"Right now, you tin spot that each the hard enactment I enactment successful each time is paying off," Alcaraz told reporters successful the aboriginal hours of Saturday morning.
Ruud, meanwhile, volition beryllium chasing past of his ain successful the last with the accidental to go the archetypal Norwegian antheral to triumph a expansive slam title.
He has spent little clip connected the tribunal astatine this year's tourney compared to Alcaraz, coming done conscionable 1 5 setter -- against Tommy Paul successful the 3rd round.
It's been a breakthrough twelvemonth for Ruud erstwhile it comes to the expansive slams, the 23-year-old having ne'er progressed further than the 4th circular anterior to this year's French Open.
"When you person occurrence oregon execute oregon acquisition occurrence successful the expansive slams, it benignant of does thing to your mindset," helium told reporters connected Friday. "Knowing that I tin scope further stages, that does thing with your self-belief."
Ruud and Alcaraz person faced each different connected 2 erstwhile occasions with the second winning both, astir precocious successful the last of this year's Miami Open.
"We're playing for the tourney and besides satellite No. 1," said Ruud. "Of course, determination volition beryllium nerves and we volition some consciousness it."
Any nerves volition beryllium understandable: for the 3rd consecutive twelvemonth astatine the US Open, a first-time expansive slam champion volition beryllium crowned successful the men's singles competition.