If Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer remain the essential stars of tennis, Carlos Alcaraz also intends to invite himself to the big table. At only 19 years old, the Spaniard has moved into another dimension after his incredible start to the season in 2022. With four titles this year, including two Masters 1000, in Miami and Madrid, he knew he was expected on the side of the door. Auteuil. He faces Karen Kachanov this Sunday evening in the round of 16, before potentially finding Nadal or Djokovic in the last four. With his new notoriety and the immense expectation around his career, Carlos Alcaraz is scrutinized closely, almost as much as a French player, if not more.
In Spain in any case, observers are convinced of its immense potential. José Manuel Amorós, sports journalist at Deportes Cuatro, believes for Le Point that the media and popular madness around the current sixth in the world at the ATP is not going to stop anytime soon. “The Alcaraz phenomenon is incredible here. Every day, all the major media report where he is, how he is doing, but also anecdotes about his daily life. It has already made the headlines. His precociousness and sympathy towards the public have already propelled him as a star in Spain. “Becoming the youngest player to reach the round of 16 at Roland-Garros since Novak Djokovic in 2006, Carlos Alcaraz continues to panic the counters.
The youngest player in the round of 16 at Roland-Garros since Djokovic in 2006 �� Carlos Alcaraz eliminates Sebastian Korda 6-4 6-4 6-2 to join the second week!
Spaniard, gifted on clay, regularly in short sleeves: it was enough for the comparison with Rafael Nadal to fuel the debates. If he is still very far from the 21 Grand Slam titles of his Majorcan elder, Alcaraz has the undisputed label of the successor. “Most of my colleagues think that Carlos can never be like Rafa,” said José Manuel Amorós. I’m a bit more split on this. I think Alcaraz can manage to break some of Nadal’s records. There are still some coincidences: they come from the same country and, given their age, one will pass the torch to the other. Alcaraz has shown he can be just as strong. He is his perfect replacement, not only on the courts, but also as a figure in Spanish sport. No one can predict how far he’ll go, but I’m sure he’ll be the public’s new idol. »
Such a comparison is not necessarily easy to assume at only 19 years old. However, Carlos Alcaraz prefers to see the glass half full, according to our Spanish colleague. “We can note something very important about this: Carlos Alcaraz himself says that he likes the pressure, because he converts it into objectives to be achieved. For example, if people compare him to Nadal, he says it’s because he’s doing well and breaking records. If we say he will be world number one in a very short time, he does not protest and claims that he has the ability to do so. It’s a very good philosophy to grow and improve. »
The sixth in the world also had to go through tougher stages to toughen up and withstand more hostile atmospheres. It’s hard not to think of the famous match against Hugo Gaston during the last Paris-Bercy Masters. “Alcaraz has shown that he learns very quickly, even under pressure. In November, we saw him cry after losing at Paris-Bercy to Gaston, with the fervor of the public. From there, he is more mature every day against elite players. He couldn’t come out in the fifth set against Berrettini at the Australian Open, due to lack of experience. He also learned from this failure. Now he can go on to defeat Nadal and Djokovic in the same tournament, in Madrid, which already confirms that he is ready to enter the category of the best players in history”, analyzes the journalist from Deportes Cuatro .
There were still a few tickets available this morning at 170 euros to attend the meeting between the great hope of Spanish tennis and Karen Kachanov. Proof that the Alcarazmania is definitely successful.