‘Carlos Alcaraz had surprised the whole world’, says ATP ace


Seven-time Grand Slam champion Mats Wilander believes Carlos Alcaraz “could become the most important player in history.” Alcaraz, 19, is already a Grand Slam champion and the youngest number 1 in tennis history. Although Alcaraz is already known as one of the biggest competitors in the game, he is also often smiling on the court, as it is clear that he enjoys himself and has fun when he is on it. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are considered tennis’ greatest icons, but Wilander believes Alcaraz could have an even bigger impact on the game than those two all-time greats. Wilander explained his opinion during a conversation with Eurosport’s Arnold Montgault. “For me, watching Alcaraz win the US Open has probably been the most exciting tournament I’ve seen in the 20+ years I’ve been working on television or in the media as an analyst. I have said that I believe that if Alcaraz can continue to win – and I have even told Juan Carlos Ferrero [Alcaraz’s coach] privately – he could become the most important tennis player we have ever had in our sport. People will say, what do you mean? Isn’t that Roger Federer? Isn’t it Rafael Nadal? Yes, they are absolutely, incredibly important. But here’s a guy who tries so hard, he’s so fast, he plays so many different shots, and he serves and volleys 15-30. He’s 19 years old! He’s 19 years old. He’s hitting drop shots at 15-30, he’s 19! He then he throws himself, and at the end he smiles and laughs. If I were a father, I would look at Alcaraz and say: “Wow, wow, is he the number 1 player in the world? 1 in the world? And does he have so much fun? Guys, you are all going to dedicate yourself to this sport because it seems that that situation it’s going to change your life,'” Wilander told Eurosport.

Alejandro Davidovich Fokina praises Alcaraz

Carlos Alcaraz’s compatriot Alejandro Davidovich Fokina heaped praise on the youngster. “I already passed that stage. I was at the ‘Next Gen’ in Milan for a year, I should have gone again, but it wasn’t done due to Covid. I’m somewhere in between because I’m almost 24 years old. And those who are ‘Next Gen’ are stepping on it very hard. I had no idea that so many young players would be so high up. The whole world was surprised by what he did because it was something stratospheric. He won a ‘Grand Slam,’ he was number one, (and) he has won many tournaments. For many, it is a way forward.”

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