Carlos Alcaraz on passing Novak Djokovic: ‘It means a lot’


Carlos Alcaraz started his second reign on the ATP throne on Monday, entering his 21st week as world no. 1 and leaving Mats Wilander on 20. Carlos earned 1000 ATP points following his third Masters 1000 title in Indian Wells, doing enough to pass Novak Djokovic and become the world’s best player for the second time at 19. For Alcaraz, it means a lot to pass Djokovic and regain the throne he lost after not competing for three months due to an injury. Carlos skipped the ATP Finals and the Australian Open and returned to action in February. The young gun bounced back on clay in Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, winning one title from two finals and earning a chance to pass the Serb with the Indian Wells title.

Novak could not enter Indian Wells, and Carlos took advantage of that. Alcaraz conquered the desert in style, winning all six matches in straight sets to add the third Masters 1000 crown to his impressive tally at 19 years. The Spaniard made a convincing start against Thanasi Kokkinakis and earned his 100th ATP victory against Tallon Griekspoor, needing only 132 matches to achieve that! Jack Draper retired in the second set in the fourth round, and the Spaniard set the quarter-final clash against Felix Auger-Aliassime. Seeking his first win over the Canadian, the Spaniard prevailed 6-4, 6-4 to advance into the semi-final and arrange another thrilling meeting with Jannik Sinner.

Carlos Alcaraz is world no. 1 again, taking the throne from Novak Djokovic.

Carlos scored a 7-6, 6-3 win for a place in the final, saving a set point on serve in the opener’s 12th game and controlling the scoreboard after that to move through. An in-form Daniil Medvedev stood between Alcaraz and the ATP throne, and only one player was on the court! Carlos earned a dominant 6-3, 6-2 victory in 70 minutes to lift the trophy and earn enough points to pass Novak Djokovic. Alcaraz started his 21st week as world no. 1, leaving Mats Wilander on 20 and targeting Ilie Nastase’s 40. However, the young gun has to defend the Miami Open title in the next two weeks to keep the ATP throne. Djokovic will become world no. 1 in April if he fails to achieve that. 

“Becoming world no. 1 again means a lot to me. I achieved that at an incredible tournament after playing well in difficult circumstances. I’m happy with my performance. I hope to carry this form to Miami; I’m confident of chasing another title,” Carlos Alcaraz said. 

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