Alcaraz believes he can beat Nadal at the French Open
The tennis superstar has become a dominant force in the ATP at only 19 years of age due to his all-rounded game but also his strong mentality.
He has become one of the most feared but also admired and charismatic tennis players in the world and all eyes are on him wherever he goes to compete.
Two years ago, quite a few tennis insiders and players considered Carlos Alcaraz as the next big star in the men’s singles category and they weren’t wrong.
The Murcia native, who won his first ATP title in July 2021, established himself as one of the Big Three’s clear successors last year when he won his first Masters 1,000 event (Miami) and first Grand Slam tournament (US Open).
Despite his great performances last year, Carlitos hasn’t slowed down in 2023 and has already won three titles and reached a final that ended up losing after getting injured.
Alcaraz likes his chances against Nadal in Paris
Now, with Roland Garros getting closer, Alcaraz is getting ready for another challenge, probably one of the biggest ones a tennis player can face during his career: defeating Rafa Nadal on clay at Roland Garros:
“Nadal’s tournament is Roland-Garros, he has the most titles, but this is the most symbolic for him. I would love to play him at Roland-Garros, measure myself against him, and see what happens”.
“I think I could beat him, but Rafa has a thousand lives there”, Alcaraz added.
While Alcaraz seems to be in red-hot form after winning the title in Barcelona, Nadal hasn’t played an official game since he lost to Mackenzie Mcdonald in the second round of the Australian Open back in January.
The turning point for Alcaraz
Alcaraz also said that his aggressive style, combined with his fighting spirit, is a result of watching Nadal play for many years and admiring how he carried himself on the courts for so long.
“I am inspired by the courage and the winning gene that he [Nadal] has inside himself,” Alcaraz admitted.
However, the turning point for Alcaraz, from being a top prospect to becoming a superstar happened last year in the Madrid Open tournament.
The Spaniard explained that his game got to a different level since he played in the quarterfinals of the event:
“When I was about to play the quarterfinals (against Nadal), the semifinals (against Djokovic), and the final (against Zverev), I didn’t realize I defeated Rafa and Djokovic before starting the final.”
“I was just focusing on the final. Alexander (Zverev) beat me a couple of times before that. It was tough for me. I remember before the final, I struggled with some problems with my feet. After that week, I didn’t realize that I beat three beasts”, he stated.
“The final inspired me a lot to know what I am capable of in beating Rafa, Djokovic, and Zverev in matches one after the other. To beat these three players gives you a lot of confidence in what you are capable of. This time round I hope I can do the same and will have a lot of desire”, he concluded.
Alcaraz, who successfully defended a title for the first time in his young career by winning the Barcelona Open, will try to do the same in Madrid before flying to Paris.