After a period of absence due to an injury that forced him to miss the last phase of the 2022 season and the Australian Open, Carlos Alcaraz is back to amaze everyone, also regaining the first position in the ranking. Indian Wells was the third Masters 1000 won by the 19-year-old in his very short career so far, in addition to the first Grand Slam won at the US Open.
Comparisons inevitably abound, there are very few of the chosen ones who can say they have done so well at his age. Paul Annacone, Taylor Fritz’s current coach and former coach of many legends of the sport, such as Roger Federer and Pete Sampras, acknowledges this.
In an interview with the New York Times, the coach spoke of the at least stylistic similarities that he sees between the Murcia tennis player and the former Swiss legend, even more than his countryman Rafael Nadal. He told: “I think Alcaraz is much more like Roger than Rafa.
Rafa couldn’t get the ball so early and so early on a point when he was 19, Rafa couldn’t get forward on the field like that. Roger was always trying to stay on the baseline and made it look like he always had time to hit the ball, and that’s how you see Carlos as well.” As mentioned, what Alcaraz is showing to the world at his age is hardly found in someone in the past.
Annacone is extremely impressed: “Alcaraz is the most complete 19-year-old player I can remember. What’s really interesting to me is to see someone with this athleticism, who has his sprint, his jumping, his explosiveness and his flexibility, but at the same time is able to have the hand-eye coordination to catch the ball from the start, move forward and volley.
Also, he can back off and change pace. He can do everything.” Meanwhile, Carlos showed up in Miami as the reigning champion and obviously wants to repeat the tournament he won in California. In the first round he will face Maxime Cressy.
From the quarterfinals onwards, if he gets there, the most interesting challenges will begin. From the possible clash with one between Taylor Fritz and Holger Rune up to the hypothetical semi-final that all tennis lovers dream of. The umpteenth chapter of the challenge with Jannik Sinner.
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