Matteo Berrettini prevails against Carlos Alcaraz in five-set tussle at Australian Open
but 18-year-old Alcaraz showed why he is regarded as one of the brightest prospects in men's tennis by fighting back to force a deciding set.
In a moment of high drama, Italy's Berrettini twisted his ankle in the second game of the final set and required medical attention.
Alcaraz, the 2021 NextGen ATP Finals champion, had upset Berrettini in a final set tiebreaker in Vienna in October.
Berrettini had his revenge in similar fashion but on a bigger stage.
Alcaraz made five breakpoints in Berrettini's opening two service games. But he couldn't convert his chances, while the Italian took advantage of his few chances.
Berrettini lost his balance and rolled his right ankle during a heavy fall in the second game of the deciding set.
Berrettini's experience showed as he raised his game in the tiebreak with Alcaraz undone by forehand errors.
The Italian sealed the contest on his second matchpoint when Alcaraz committed a double fault.