The Murcian Carlos Alcaraz ignites the US Open at 18 years old, beating world No. 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas and winning over the public for his spectacularity. His father was a good tennis player at the national level who failed to make the final leap to the ATP Tour.
“I wish Carlos the best, he has the values that society needs. For me, more important than any success is to be a good person. When you have values, the stages are covered at a greater speed. He is already where he is and he is a good, humble boy and hard-working. He has all the ingredients to be a great champion and he can improve a lot in the coming years; depending on how much he does it, that will make the difference: he will be very good or an incredible champion. ”These are the words of Rafa Nadal analyzing the Murcian during this season. “It is a matter of time”, also meant the Manacor.
Just a few months since Carlos Alcaraz won his first ATP trophy in July, on the clay of Umag (Croatia), and established himself at the international level, defeating the world No. 3, Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas , 6-3, 4- 6, 7-6 (2), 0-6 and 7-6 (5), at Arthur Ashe Stadium, which vibrated with the spectacular tennis of the 18-year-old Spaniard.
‘Let’s Go Carlos’, claimed the fans pushing the boy from El Palmar (Murcia) . In the universe of tennis he was followed since he was a child, always winning superior rivals. At 15 he added his first world ranking point in a Futures in his land. At 16, he debuted his ATP victories record by defeating Albert Ramos in the Rio de Janeiro tournament.
At each firm step he took, the notice that Rafa Nadal’s successor was arriving. Alcaraz admires the trajectory of the manacorí, his sports idol, with the same intensity with which he claims his own personality and career. “I do not want to be compared to Nadal, he has already made his way and I want to do mine,” says the Murcian without fanfare. “We cannot fall into the error of comparing Alcaraz with Nadal. People are in a hurry to find the replacement but we are a little tired of this,” claimed his coach Juan Carlos Ferrero .
Each one in its place, and Alcaraz presents qualities and capacities to carve out its own route without any shadow. He has the gift of special athletes. Not only is it a forehand that bursts the ball, an increasingly complete serve or a backhand that will end up becoming another lethal weapon. See tennis clearer and before most. He is passionate about this sport and the daily work that helps him to be better every day. With humility and that smile that Ferrero invites you to keep so that you can enjoy yourself on the track.
The former world number one and Davis Cup and Roland Garros champion did not hesitate to travel frequently to Murcia in his first contacts as Carlos Alcaraz’s coach in the summer of 2018, supporting the local team formed by Kiko Navarro , who took the reins of the first coach, Carlos Santos , and Álex Sánchez.
At the Real Sociedad Club de Campo de Murcia Carlos Alcaraz started hitting rackets when he was 3 years old. Logical within a tennis-soaked family. He is the second of four siblings. His father, Carlos Alcaraz, stood out as tennis players at the national level, although he did not make the leap to the ATP Tour. He became a coach.
He has tutored his son’s career as a parent, with the invaluable help of Postres Reina, a company that supported him for 10 years so that he could compete in international tournaments. An economic aid that was strengthened by signing for the representation company IMG, which handled sponsorships such as Nike or Babolat. Alcaraz was the new jewel in the crown.
Ferrero and Alcaraz signed their professional union and the Murcian settled in the JC Ferrero-Equelite Academy in Villena (Alicante), where the Valencian became one of the greats together with his mentor Antonio Martínez-Cascales . The now ‘coach’ enjoyed the impudence of his pupil at the US Open, along with manager Albert Molina and physiotherapist Juanjo Moreno . The trio that accompanies Carlos the most. He also relies a lot on his teammate Pablo Carreñ o, like a brother to him on the circuit and when they train in the Levantine lands or in the RCT Barcelona-1899 , a club that both defend.
“I honestly don’t copy any player’s style. I just play my style. But if I have to say a player who is similar to my game, I think it’s Federer, trying to be aggressive all the time. I think that’s a good comparison for me. “Alcaraz analyzed after his big night in New York. Don’t speculate, hit. What makes him more dangerous on a hard court.
This Sunday he faces the German Peter Gojowczyk , 32 years old and number 141 in the world. Role change for Alcaraz, now a favorite. But if something distinguishes him, it is his mentality. He is very strong in the head. He proved it in his strict 14-day quarantine without leaving his hotel room in Australia. He put a mattress on the wall to keep his shape, read a biography of Nadal in his spare time. One of his hobbies, as well as golf and soccer (Real Madrid throws him). And he made his Grand Slam debut, beating the previous one and winning a main draw match, at 17. A sign of advanced maturity.
He may be the youngest US Open quarter-finalist in the professional era, surpassing the age of Andre Agassi by six days in 1998. Michael Chang reached the Roland Garros quarterfinals at 18 in 1990.
Alcaraz is a phenomenon as early as it is solid. The foundations are well laid. The ‘Newcomer (debutant) of The Year ATP’ in 2020 continues to burn stages at a dizzying pace. The world number one and Grand Slam crowns will be real targets in the future. Although in the future even closer than foreseeable.