He is the future of men’s tennis and also the present. World number one –Novak Djokovic

by Roger Childs

Two weeks ago he won in Barcelona and last weekend it was in his country’s capital, Madrid. Carlos Alcaraz is the great tennis find of 2022 and earlier in the year won the prestigious Miami 1000 tournament.

Prior to the Barcelona success, however, there were some ups and downs. Back in March his compatriot the great Rafael Nadal beat him in the quarter-finals 6-4 4-6 6-4 at Indian Wells and in the April Monte Carlo event he went out in the second round, beaten by American Sebastian Korda 7-6 6-7 6-3.

However, once he came to Spain a month ago he hasn’t lost a match.

The complete game bring success

Coached by Spaniard Juan Ferrero, Carlos Alcaraz has wonderful tennis skills. He is superbly fit and has amazing speed around the court. He has a great sense of anticipation, a strong, reliable serve and his ground strokes are played with immense power. One of his classic shots is a well-disguised drop shot and his frequent use of this deceptive play in recent tournaments has encouraged other players to employ it more.

He has just had his 19th birthday and already plays with the maturity of the greats. In the just completed Spanish Open he beat the legendary Rafael Nadal in the quarter finals, world number one Djokovic in the semis and then the second seed Alexander Zverev in the final. The matches against Nadal and Djokovic were close, but he thrashed the German, 6-3 6-1 to  take the trophy.

He commented after his victory: This tournament is special for me because it’s a tournament I came and watched when I was seven or eight.

More success to come?

After being ranked 120 in the world a year ago, The Spaniard is now up to number 6 and likely to go higher.

Alcaraz has the tall, lithe build of most top male tennis players and a broad smile. He is modest about his successes, but does concede that he can win a grand slam. There are two over the next couple of months — Roland Garros in a weeks’ time and Wimbledon late in June. Carlos Alcaraz is likely to be very competitive.