Wimbledon 2023: Alcaraz Beats Djokovic to Usher in New Era – Key Stats From the Final

Carlos AlcarazThe stage was set for Novak Djokovic to stamp his mark as the greatest tennis player of all time: the 2023 Wimbledon final saw him line up against 20-year-old Spanish upstart, Carlos Alcaraz. Victory for Djokovic would have been his 24th Grand Slam title, something that would have put him level with Margaret Court (and one ahead of Serena Williams). It would also have been his eighth Wimbledon title, which would have equalled Roger Federer’s record. Alas, for the Serbian tennis master, young Alcaraz hadn’t read that script… or at least he certainly wasn’t willing to stick to it!

How Alcaraz Beat Djokovic at Wimbledon 2023

It took Alcaraz five sets (played over a marathon duration of four hours and 42 minutes) to get the better of the ever determined and supremely gifted Djokovic. Although Alcaraz went into the match as the number one-ranked player in the world, most pundits – and betting sites – assumed that Djokovic would find a way to win, as he has in so many Grand Slam finals over his illustrious career.

Indeed, it was the reigning champion who was first out of the blocks, racing to the first set with an emphatic 6-1 scoreline. At points during the opening set it looked like something of a mismatch as the young Spaniard couldn’t find his rhythm and the old master was pulling all the strings. But Alcaraz battled back in the second set and edged it in a tiebreak. Given no player in history has a better record than the Serb in tiebreakers, that was a clear indication that this would not be a one-sided affair.

It was during the third set that Alcaraz really started to motor and his power and precision really began to cause problems for Djokovic. Although many games were very even, Alcaraz gained an advantage as his opponent appeared frustrated by his own uncharacteristically poor shots, the windy conditions and even the fact that the Wimbledon crowd appeared to be favouring the younger player. The Spaniard took advantage and won the set 6-1.

Djokovic hasn’t won so many tournaments without being able to handle a bit of adversity, and he showed his mettle by winning the fourth set 6-3 to set up a decider. By the fifth set, both players were tiring but the exertion had taken more of a toll on the older man and the 16-year age gap between them possibly proved pivotal in the end. Alcaraz used a clever variety of shots to keep the Serb moving and stretching and eventually the Spaniard won the final set 6-4 to land his first Wimbledon title and second Slam.

So that’s the general picture, but let’s delve into the key stats for the final to see how Alcaraz achieved the victory.

Men’s Wimbledon Final 2023 – Key Stats

Alcaraz Statistic Djokovic
94/150 (63%) 1st Serve In 118/184 (64%)
66/94 (70%) 1st Serve Points Won 73/118 (62%)
9 Aces 2
7 Double Faults 3
28/56 (50%) 2nd Serve Points Won 37/66 (56%)
66 Winners 32
45 Unforced Errors 40
168 Total Points Won 166

The first thing that is apparent from the stats is just how close things were. Over almost five hours of tennis, it’s telling that Alcaraz won only two more points than Djokovic (168 to 166). At the top of most sports, the margins between winning and losing are fine, but that is almost ridiculously close.

But then on the other hand, comparing the number of winners the Spaniard hit (66) to the number Djokovic managed (just 32), and a picture emerges of the match: Alcaraz was willing to play imaginative drop shots (which were often heavily disguised) and thus kept Djokovic guessing and unable to fully settle into his usual rhythm.

Also telling here is the difference in the percentage of points each player won on their first serves. Alcaraz won 70% of his first serve points while Djokovic was significantly below that on just 62%. To give a comparison, the Serb won 80% of the points on his first serve in his 2023 French Open final victory over Casper Ruud.

During that match, Djokovic also got 73% of his first serves in, compared to just 64% in the Wimbledon final. So could the Serb have been having a very rare off day, or might he have been surprised or even rattled by the ability of the young Spaniard who was giving at least as good as he got?

Is This a Changing of the Guard Moment?

When Carlos Alcaraz won the men’s Wimbledon title, it was the first time since 2002 that the tournament had been won by anyone other than Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic or Andy Murray. Such has been the stranglehold the Big Three (and Andy!) have had on the Grand Slams over the last two decades, could this victory finally mark a new era in men’s tennis? We think it could.

For all Djokovic’s brilliance, he can’t hold back the sands of time, and although he is clearly amazingly fit and doing well physically, he is still 36 years old and towards the end of the Wimbledon final it was starting to become apparent that he can’t carry on forever.

We are not saying he should retire, of course. We think he certainly has one or two Grand Slams left in him yet. But, given that Federer has called it a day and Nadal and Murray are certainly nearing the end of their top-level careers, we feel Alcaraz is very well set to take full advantage as the old guard make way for the new.

Other Young Players to Watch Out For

Casper Ruud, who is still just 24 years old, lost out to Djokovic in the 2023 French Open final and to Rafael Nadal in Paris in 2022. He also made it to the US Open final in 2022, but there he went down to a certain young Spaniard by the name of Carlos Alcaraz (that was his first Grand Slam title, incidentally). We think Ruud is well-placed to compete with Alcaraz in the next few years in the various Slams, and though it might not develop into the kind of rivalries we’ve seen between Djokovic and Nadal and Federer, both players have the ability to push the other to new levels.

Greek player Stefanos Tsitsipas is another 24-year-old who could make an impact in the coming years. He won the ATP Tour Finals in 2019 and made the finals of the Australian Open in 2023 and the French Open in 2021 (losing out to Djokovic on both occasions).

Others who could develop in the next year or two include 20-year-old Dane, Holger Rune, and the man who Djokovic beat in his Wimbledon semi this year, Italian Jannik Skinner. Overall though, Alcaraz is very much the man of the moment and if he steers clear of injuries, we think he could win many more Grand Slam titles in the next decade. He might even challenge Djokovic’s total of 23!